The 2012 election is finally over. Most of my candidates lost, but I am sort of not surprised. Just seriously disappointed. The outcome signals several things to me.
- I am getting old. We could play the “I remember” game about past elections, civility, truth being spoken by the major candidates, people actually being in control of their lives, friendship and respect between people who disagreed over fundamental issues, etc. Instead of that, though, I just feel old. Mitt and I are the same age. He won’t run again. In fact, nobody from my generation will run again. The next round will be between people Marc Rubio and Paul Ryan’s age. Chris Matthews will fade into the recycle pit. O’Reiley will finally be quiet. Juan Williams will be branded as he really is, a full-blown liberal. Even our Fake President Obama will fade away. Life has a way of moving on.
- The nature of our nation is changing. It is perhaps just as well that I get old and ride into the sunset. I confess I am concerned for my children and especially for my grandchildren. I hope they will have opportunities to go to college and have good jobs. I still believe God is in charge and that we will come out stronger on the other side. It will be painful, though.
- The role of our country is also changing. I have long believed that the purpose and mission of the USA has been to serve as a place from which the Gospel of Peace, the message of salvation through Jesus Christ, can and will go to all the world. The history of our founding and growth has taught me that. God’s hand has been in our history from the very beginning. There has been conflict and turmoil, as there will always be until Satan is bound and cast out into his own kingdom, but the result has been a strong People of God who have come to know The One in whom we put our trust. As the Church and Kingdom of God grow and spread over the earth, just as Daniel said it would do, the focus on the USA will probably also diminish, though not go away. Great leaders are being brought forward from many nations. It was never only about America. We lead the way, but there are many who also follow.
- The optimist in me clings to the bright side of what the future might hold. A lot of that hope comes from the Book of Mormon. Those people went through some pretty dismal scenes, too, but in the end their happiness was contingent on their individual commitment to be obedient and keep the commandments. As Alma said, wickedness (disobedience) never was happiness, but we as individuals (and therefore as a nation) have the opportunity to repent and change. Salvation is an individual matter.
I will leave it at that. Gaye and I are almost ready to go. Good thing, too, because we enter the MTC on Monday. Our house is full of family. All the kids are here and it is happy confusion. We will have our non-farewell tomorrow and pack our bags to fly to SLC Monday morning. What will this adventure bring to us? I promise I will get my camera out next time.