What I Learned from the Iraqis

This weekend I was moved.  I felt a deep sense of pride, excitement, shame, and wonder.  The emotion was so great I couldn’t physically react by wanting to cry.

Don’t worry.  I was still too much of a man to actually do that.

I was so moved by those who voted in the
Iraq election.  The first news story I saw was in regards to expatriates from Iraq who voted here in the
United States.  The glee in their eyes, the joy in their faces, and the passion in their bodies was moving.

Some of these great men and women traveled over a thousand miles to vote.

Then I heard the stories of people voting in
Iraq.  At the risk of their lives, millions of Iraqi’s stepped up to the ballot box to get their purple finger and their freedom.  Even if the purple finger meant that you might get a bullet to your head.

Then with ink on their hands they began to dance in the streets singing songs of joy and renewal.

I applaud the courageous and strong men and women who cast their vote.

As I offer my praise, however, I can’t help but think of our own election.

Why aren’t we out in the street rejoicing?  Why aren’t we putting on our Sunday Best when we vote?  Why aren’t we willing to stand at the ballot box in fear that we might die because we are there?

There is a great sense of apathy in our Country.  We no longer see the vote as a privilege.  Rather we see it as an entitlement.

Yes, we do have the right to vote, and we are entitled to that right.  However, we need to remember that we are some of the few that truly have that right.  So, it is more of privilege than a right.

We need to overcome our apathy.  We need to rejoice every time we vote.  It is an awesome privilege that we need to respect.

You can guarantee that in 2 years I will be putting on my Sunday Best.  I want to show the same respect for this wonderful privilege that God has blessed me with.  I will show it the same respect that I show God, but putting on a suit and tie.

I might even do a little dancing in the street, but I am too much of a coward to make that kind of a statement.

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