Election Day is one of my favorite days.

We could go into Election Day full of dread and unease. Or we could approach it with hope and optimism. Sometimes, we feel all of these.

What I love about Election Day is that it is a day in which more than 100 million Americans participate in a civic duty that is entirely focused on the future. It is all about potential and opportunity. Even when campaigns drudge up the sins of the past or we look to recapture a time long since passed, we gather today to make a decision about tomorrow.

For those that have already cast their ballots and those preparing to, let us pray together around this one important idea: we gather today for the future.

GOD of Hope and Wonder,
we thank you for our blessings
of material goods and the more beautiful world.
We share in your joy for all that is
and was
and will be.

As we gather in churches and municipal buildings,
in schools and township halls,
we do so with an end in mind.
We have candidates who we prefer
and initiatives upon which we have already decided.
May we take the time to discern your will for us
before we cast our ballots.
And may your mercy be shown to us
after we do.

May we see your ways in these places
filled with volunteers who sacrifice their whole day
and much of their night
to ensure the process is smooth and honest.
May our compassion for their plight move us
more than our annoyance for waiting in line.
May we see in our neighbors
all the sorts and conditions of humanity,
that we might be moved by their state
of comfort or discomfort,
that our children may see our best,
and that we might learn to hope from them.

We trust that your favor and grace is upon us
without regard to political affiliation.
We pray that each political victory
is not to us a symbol of your support
anymore than each political defeat
is a sign of your wrath.
May this day of all days be a reminder
of your unceasing mission for the world:
a mission of repentance and reconciliation;
of death and new life;
of healing division and reuniting families.
And that we remember to approach this life
as the Kingdom we long for,
as the people you long for,
revealing the dream we all long for.

Remind us, stir us, provoke us, pinch us,
help us to remember,
to always remember,
that we are not a species shackled to the past
or hopelessly locked in the present,
but one whose health and vitality
(our very ability to flourish)
depends on our hope for tomorrow.
For you are the source of our yesterday,
our today, and our tomorrow,
and may each moment be an opportunity
of praise and thanksgiving for all your works;
in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Photo Credit: [Adam Baker] via Compfight cc

Photo Credit: [Adam Baker] via Compfight cc