Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I Voted - - - Have YOU?

I just got back from voting, and I am happy.

That’s not to say that it was the quick and easy experience I have come to expect on Election Day.

But, it is a testimony to me that God lives; that He not only loves us, but that He is mindful of us and the circumstances in which we live; and that He is still in charge.

It has been raining on and off all weekend, and the clouds were dark and threatening all day yesterday. I worried about how that would affect voter turnout. And then it began to rain, and it rained all night long. And I feared that only the truly committed would turn out to vote.

And then I woke up to the most beautiful fall day imaginable! The sun was shining, the sky was blue with only wispy white clouds high in the sky, and the temps are abut 70 degrees here in Goleta as it nears noon.

We left to cast our votes a little over an hour ago, and drove to the location where we have been casting our votes for something like 10 years . . . only to find that they weren’t doing it this year. But, as we walked past the office, I glanced over and saw a sign in the window:

"Memo from God: Today I will be handling all of your problems."

I’ve seen the whole memo before, and I stopped reading there and hurried to catch up with Derrin, but as I got to the car, I felt this little tug on my heart, like a special chime had just sounded to tell me "You’ve Got Mail!" and I knew that I hadn’t read that memo by chance.

I paused, and offered a prayer of thanks.

Unfortunately, our Sample Ballots had grown legs and wandered off, so we weren’t sure WHERE we *should* go. But, we saw a sign, "VOTE," with an arrow, and followed it to a nearby location where a bus from a neighboring retirement center was parked by the door. A good sign!

Unfortunately, they couldn’t find us on any of their voter rolls at that location. But a helpful voting assistant person approached us, and said she was a MAP, and would find out where we belonged.

She did, and after giving the Map a hug, we were on our way to our THIRD ATTEMPT of the morning to cast our ballots . . . this time at the correct voting location!

It seems like this happens every time there is an important issue on the ballot. Someone neglects to mail out the absentee ballots for the conservatives in the county until it’s too late to get them mailed back, and/or they change the voting locations. But NO ONE is going to take away my right to vote! I don’t care what kind of hoops I have to jump through, or what kind of silly maze they make me run . . . I shall persist until I arrive at the correct destination!

It felt SO GOOD to sign my name as a voting citizen of this free land; I was proud to receive my ballot; and I was filled with joy as I marked my choices and participated in the democratic process.

As I usually do, I checked over my ballot before turning it in to make sure I had marked everything the way I wanted to. And it was probably that small delay that was responsible for the segment of music that began playing on the radio as Derrin turned the car on to return home. Maybe . . .

The reason I had to sit down as soon as we got in the house and post this blog is because, as we started the engine, the radio was nearing the end of Sibelius’ "Finlandia," and I heard
"Be still, my soul: Thy God doth undertake
To guide the future as he has the past.
Thy hope, thy confidence let nothing shake;
All now mysterious shall be bright at last."
Followed by some of the grandest, most triumphal music ever written.

I am at peace. I have done all that I can do. The rest is in God’s capable hands. He will take care of us, whatever the outcome of this election.

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