Eugene Cho

obama, clinton, and mccain

During the Lent season, I’ve been thinking that one of the things I should considering letting go is “politics.”  I’ve been spending a bit too much time on the internet and tube but it’s been difficult to resist as there’s definitely something different…  As I’ve shared before:  Never in my thoughts did I imagine that in my lifetime, I would experience the legitimate candidacy of the following three individuals:  a candidate [John McCain] at the age of 72 [if voted] and 80 if he completes 2 terms; a woman [Hilary Clinton], and an African-American [Barack Obama].

Again, while I do not believe policies, politics, and politicians are THE answer, Christ followers ought to be involved in the process to work with others in using the system to DO GOOD.  I intend to vote in the February 19 primary and will do more due diligence in voting for a presidential candidate between the two party representatives on November 4.  I have no party affiliation but will seek to support the candidate “who will give us the greatest freedom to proclaim the gospel, live it out, and provide the system closest to what we think is gospel-like.” [Scot McKnight]  FYI, Quest Church will be a voting location on February 19 as well.

This blog’s presidential “caucus” has produced some great conversations and support for respective candidates.  Since the majority of the support appeared to be for Obama, I thought I’d share couple links that will be worth your time to consider the other two candidates:

What I Want Rabid Obama Supporters to Understand by An Angry Asian Mans Supporting Hilary Clinton for President.

I’ve also been reflecting on this comment from the Jesus Creed and some dialogue about McCain

…I guess what i am trying to say is that we know we are living in a broken world. Bad things happen to good people. Bad things happen to bad people. There are rich people who are bad, as well as rich people who are good. God sends rain on the rightous and the wicked.

People seem to be trying to fix this broken world through the government, they have good intentions. It is tough to see poverty and suffering and injustice. But man did this when we sinned, the world is broken. We can not fix it through organizations run by man.

The good news is that Jesus came to mend it, through his Church pain and suffering are eased but not removed. Jesus told us life would be hard and painful, but there is a better place. We should do the best while we are here to help those in need while sharing the Gospel with them. I think we should pray to God for help and guidance on the best way to do this. I have trouble trusting a government that does not believe in a higher power than itself, and that seems to be where we are heading. If and when government gets too much power they think they are god and do not have to answer for anything it does, that is a real danger. It has happened before and will probably happen again…”

Filed under: politics, religion, , ,

11 Responses

  1. Tim D. says:

    I hear you. It’s been very exciting to start caring again about politics and with technology, just seems to be all around me. Thanks for sharing some of your thoughts. I agree that your blog is one of the best blogs.

  2. godfactauthor says:

    HI Eugene

    As our priest said in the sermon on Sunday. Lent is a time to sacrifice those things that have a hold on you. But does that mean giving up on speaking out for justice and a government that will uphold the sacredness of life? Of course not. I’m a Catholic author from New Zealand who has two books available in the US. I’ve sent a request to add you on Facebook.

    God bless

    Brendan
    http://www.godfact.com

  3. Tess says:

    Eugene,

    Would you explain how the Washington delegate system works?
    In other words, how can you hold both caucuses and primary?
    And how, then, is it decided what number of delegates candidates get from each??

    Totally confused!

  4. How come Huckabee is not an option. He is the only christian candidate. We have seen our country without GOD. Isn’t it time to bring GOD back?

  5. me says:

    teri from texas: he’s certainly still an option since he hasn’t removed himself from the primaries. but, you have to admit he has a very long, long, long shot.

    as for your question about “isn’t it time to bring GOD back?” – wasn’t george w. bush supposed to do that? and while huckabee might be more similar to your christian spirituality, i think we’d be wrong in thinking or believing that clinton, mccain, and obama aren’t christians.

  6. uenomurakami says:

    Tess,

    If you want to figure out the delegate system and all that you should check out CNN’s website – http://edition.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/. It is really comprehensive and really easy to understand. I used it to explain the system to a room full of Japanese. They got it (to some degree). I think you will find it helpful.

    Peace

  7. me says:

    tess,

    yes, you can do both here – technically.

    for the democratic party, all the delegates were used during the caucus this past weekend. for the republican party, they split up the half of the delegates for the caucus and the other half for the primary coming up on the 19th.

    confused? read the following for more clarification:
    http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2004148965_caucusprimary28m.html

  8. BEW says:

    Eugene,

    I hope this doesn’t come across as just a plug, but have you heard or read much of Greg Boyd’s thinking on the subject? He was interviewed by Charlie Rose a while back. The Myth of a Christian Nation is *really* good, as are his sermons and blog posts.

    Here’s the Charlie Rose interview:

    http://www.charlierose.com/shows/2006/08/17/2/a-conversation-with-pastor-gregory-boyd

  9. me says:

    BEW,
    I’m a fan of Greg Boyd and have enjoyed watching that clip before. I haven’t read the book yet but check out his blog every now and then. Wished he opened up comments…

  10. BEW says:

    I also wish his blog was open to comments, but I can understand why it’s not.. he says a lot of things that could (unfortunately) be considered offensive to some. Opening his posts to comments could be Pandora’s Box for people who want to attack him in a public forum.

    On the other hand, his church is taking a poll of their website users to get a feel for exactly how many people are out there listening to him (IIRC, they’ve got something like 9000 podcast subcribers) and how they can expand their presence online. One question asks if things like discussion boards, web chats, and online classes would be useful. So hopefully there will be an opportunity soon to engage with his ideas like that.

    I will say this, though. I emailed him about a blog posting not too long ago and he took the time to respond thoughtfully. I think it’s pretty astonishing that someone as busy as he is would take the time to do that.

    More directly to your original post, I found this comment interesting:

    “Christ followers ought to be involved in the process to work with others in using the system to DO GOOD”

    While I totally agree with you, I think I’ve given up on the hope that our system will ever be a consistent agent of good. It’s the nature of our democratic system entangled with our society’s continuing shift towards greed and self-interest. Slowly, the “stars and stripes” is being replaced with a flag straight out of Richie Rich. A white banner with a big gold dollar sign. We’re a nation of flat-out rich people.. yet our education system, our transportation infrastructure, our outreach to the poor both home and abroad are all crumbling. Why? Because apparently no one wants to pay for them. Even if some do, it would be political suicide for a candidate to stand up and say “You know what? We *really* need to raise taxes. A lot.” We can (and I will) continue to vote for the candidates that will work towards enacting good, but I’m learning not to place my hope in our government’s capacity to actually follow through.

    PS – visited Q for the first time today and you’ve really done a great job there!

  11. me says:

    BEW: having comments open doesn’t necessarily mean you need to respond to stuff. i just let things play themselves out unless someone goes overboard. the issue is time since he must be pretty busy.

    as for your comment, i agree but we need to keep trying. we need to keep our hope ultimately in the force of the GOOD, MERCY, and JUSTICE [the triune God] and work within the systems of this world.

    in some way, when i read your comment, i almost thought you were describing the “C”hurch. we have must to repent and work towards as well.

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One Day’s Wages

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Today, Minhee and I dropped off our eldest child at her college. We have been thinking and praying about this day for many years. On some days, we hoped it would never come. On other days, we couldn't wait for it to come. On some days, we prayed for time to stop and other days, we prayed with anticipation. 
After an entire summer of laughing it off, it hit us...hard...this week. Seeing all of her stuff laid out on the basement floor was the catalyst to a load of emotions.

After unloading the car and taking her stuff to her new home for this year and mindful that she might never live with us again; helping sort out her stuff, saying hello to her roommates...I wasn't sure what to do or say.

A flood of thoughts rushed my mind.

Is she ready?
Have we done enough?
Have we taught her enough? 
What if this? What if that?

And so we shared what we have shared with her the moment she began to understand words: "Remember who you are. Remember WHO you belong to. Remember what you're about. God loves you so much. Please hold God's Word and His promises close and dear to your heart. We love you so much and we are so proud of you." And with that, we said goodbye. Even if she may not be thousands of miles away, this is a new chapter for her and even for us. I kept it composed. Her roommate was staring at me. I didn't want to be that father. I have street cred to uphold. Another final hug. 
And I came home.
And I wept.
Forget my street cred.
I miss her. I love her.
She will always be my little baby.

I'm no parenting guru. I just laughed as I wrote that line. No, I'm stumbling and bumbling along but I'd love to share an ephiphany I learned not that long ago. Coming to this realization was incredibly painful but simultaneously, liberating. To be honest, it was the ultimate game-changer in my understanding as a parent seeking after the heart of God.

While there are many methods, tools, philosophies, and biblical principles to parenting, there is – in my opinion – only one purpose or destination.

Our purpose as parents is to eventually…release them. Send forth. For His glory. Met a friend and fellow pastor who I haven't seen in over 20 years. In him, I saw a glimpse of my future. While only 10 years older, his kids are married and he's now a grandfather of 3. His love for his wife and family were so evident and his passion for the Gospel has not wavered. It was so good to see someone a bit older still passionately serving the Lord with such joy and faithfulness. Lord, help me to keep running the race for your Glory. Happy wife.
Happy life. - Eugenius 3:16

I still remember that time, many years ago, when Minhee was pregnant with our first child. She had left her family and friends in Korea just two years before. Her morning sickness was horrible and when she finally had an appetite, she craved her favorite Korean food from certain restaurants in her neighborhood in Seoul, Korea. I had no way of getting that food from those restaurants so I actually said, "How about a Whopper? Big Mac?" Sorry honey. Eat away. You deserve it. I don't care if it sounds mushy but sunsets are one of my love languages. Seoul, Korea was amazing but WOW...what a breathtaking welcome back sunset by Seattle. Not ready to let go of summer. Seattle. 7:00pm. Desperately holding on to summer. #goldengardenpark #nofilter Happy Birthday, Minhee! I'm so grateful for you. You radiate faith, hope, and love.  No...you don't complete me. That would be silly and simply humanly impossible but you keep pointing me and our family to Christ who informs and transforms our lives, marriage, family, and ministry. Thanks for being so faithful. I love you so much. (* And what a gift to be in Korea together.)

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