Thursday, March 17, 2016

Looking for America

A reviewer of my novel, Wake the Dead, reported the book’s premise is not too far from what we could be facing as Christians in America. While some readers fear the novel’s absurd use of technology, others are alarmed by my portrayal of a despotic government linked to the entertainment industry. I researched transhumanism and found it a potential threat to our way of life. I did not consider the possibility of this imagined futuristic government becoming a reality. Especially not by the mid-2030s—the time frame of my weird, made-up, maybe coming true story.

Yet now I’m entertained in a sick sort of way by presidential debates. By candidates’ scary laughs, crooked smiles, and wild eyes. By their blatantly rude comments, reckless recommendations, and radical solutions. This has got to be a comedy—or a tragedy—scripted, directed, produced. Superbly acted? We’ll see who gets the award.

In keeping with my kind of fiction, this cast of potential presidents includes a little-known candidate from the Transhumanist Party. Zoltan Istvan is a transhumanist (not to be confused with an actual transhuman) “aiming to put science, health, and technology at the forefront of American politics.” He’d like Chase Sterling, my futuristic government’s prototype transhuman. But Mr. Istvan hasn’t devised anything as sinister as turning a citizen into a transhuman against his will, which is what happened to Chase.

Well, I’m not sure what Mr. Istvan has planned, but I am fairly certain he doesn’t expect to win this election. He’s just making a statement about where he believes the world should be headed. The other candidates have their beliefs too. Some aim to bring back the greatness of our country. Some lean toward socialism. Some have a toe in the muddy waters of fascism. Some claim to be Christian. Others mean it, if their convictions match their words. God knows.

And God knows where this election will end. He knows who will lead our nation into a revival of old patriotism or into a new world order. But I get the impression from the actors on the stage and the directors in the media that they believe they’re in charge of the outcome. Whether this entertaining show is scripted or not, God will deliver us to our apex in history. It’s by His hand we became a great nation. It’s by His hand we remain. And it’s by His hand we will progress. Or see our end.

While I’m watching the players, being mindful of what my country may become, I’m seeking a glimpse of what it once was. I’m not afraid to look forward, even if it means monumental change. I’m not devoted to the good old days, but I know the dangers of forgetting history. Ours is filled with grief, error, triumph, and freedom. And blessing beyond any nation God has ever blessed. It’s not perfect, but it is a land of hope. So I’m looking for that lovely, consecrated, blessed country I call mine.  We average citizens of the U.S.A. don’t know what the future will reveal. For now, I’m looking for America to seek God’s mercy, and to remain a great nation.

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