We (popadia and I) were driving down a local ‘in-town’ road a couple of weeks ago, and we drove up behind a car with a bumper sticker. I don’t try to read everything on such vehicles. Very often they contain messages that are less than edifying. But in this case, I laughed out loud.
They say that for something to be truly funny, it needs to be founded in reality. What did the sticker say? It was three simple words: I MISS TRUTH! As I let the message get absorbed into my thoughts, the first reaction was, “Yes! Me too!!!”
Look at the world around you.
We’ve labored for the past 20 years to keep political issues out of this forum because it’s not the place of your spiritual father to attempt to coerce you into thinking in any given “left or right” leaning direction—as relates to candidates, people.
However, when political issues inject themselves into the spiritual realm, we must react with spiritual insight, always praying that God will reveal to us the direction He chooses for us to take, and being open enough to seek HIS truth, and not the “truth” being offered to us by worldly entities - from either side!
Take for instance Issue 1 on the upcoming November ballot. Those urging Ohio citizens to vote YES state that voting NO on the issue will prevent victims of rape from seeking abortions. They further state that women whose lives are in danger from pregnancy will be prevented from seeking an abortion.
What’s the truth? Visit snopes.com/fact-check/ohio-abortion-law-no-rape-exception/. They declare the rape claim to be FALSE.
And what are the “risks to the life of a mother” that would require abortion?
Maternal mortality in the US is increasing, with an estimated 17.4 maternal deaths per every 100,000 live births. (That’s less than 0.02% - source: forbes.com/health/womens-health/pregnancy/pregnancy-statistics/)
For the record, EVERY child aborted loses its life! (That’s 100% - source: Fr. Basil)
“But Father, if these claims are false, how can they lie about it?”
Good question! The answer lies in the second tier of falsehoods that surround us, that which USED to be called “news reporting.” As evidenced above, we can’t believe everything we’re told. We must do our own digging and research to find what is right, where is truth.
In days gone by, those who acquired degrees in journalism would dig into potential lies and expose them. This is how the presidency of Richard Nixon and the excesses of Joseph McCarthy were brought down. Good comes from a free press and from conscientious journalists. For this to be the case, there should be reporting that presents fact, not opinion.
Today, those who ‘report the news’ seem quite openly to be only surrogates for those who have the financial wherewithal to own “news entities”, which report basically what they’re told to report.
Today, truth doesn’t matter. Aligning the story with an edicted narrative seems to be what matters.
But there’s only ONE place to find the TRUTH. You know Who He is and where to find Him.
For us, what becomes important is to attempt to follow His will in all such wranglings. "Seek first the Kingdom." Our Lord's words about His Apostles are true for us as well. "I have given them Your word; and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world." (John 17:14)
After the world gives its answer in a divisive election such as this, we need to live in such a way as to have our lives speak the TRUTH so that others can find it (and Him) within us, regardless of what the voting results turn out to be. This is NOT a call to deny or disobey. It IS a call to continue to speak truth, to shine light where there is darkness.
Don’t anguish over what the world is doing and will do. Each of us needs to do what the Holy Spirit reveals to us in prayer as that which is right.
Remember the words of St. Seraphim of Sarov, “Save yourself, and thousands around you will be saved!” Work out your own salvation in fear and trembling (Phil 2:12). Follow Christ!