Progressive Revival

Progressive Revival

Praise God?

Praise God!

Barack Obama has been elected President of the United States!

Praise God!

Proposition 8 has passed!

I’ve heard or read both of these sentiments repeatedly over the last 48 hours – sometimes from the same people – and it has begun to make me question how we attribute God’s working in the world. What litmus test do we use to determine if an event is of God or not?

I celebrate the election of Barack Obama.  He is smart, inspiring and a born leader. His campaign promoted hope, unity and the possibility that we can heal the wounds of our past. With the election of Barack Obama, the American people recognized the past, turned to face the future and stepped forward.


I mourn the passing of Prop 8.  It was a campaign that promoted fear of difference and devaluated a class of people by degrading their love. It forced lesbian and gay people into second class citizenship. With the passing Prop 8, Californians looked to the future that held Gay and Lesbian people with equal worth and with equal rights, turned to face the past, and stepped back.

Martin Luther King, Jr said: “The moral arc of the universe is long but it bends towards justice.” This is the way I understanding where God dwells within history.  God is found in the movement towards justice and love for all people.  God is found in hope not fear; unity not division; justice not discrimination.  By facing forward, those with eyes to see recognize where God is working today. I can see God even in the Prop 8 vote. While it is a setback for gay and lesbian people, it is also reflects progress as the measure passed with narrow margins and was almost defeated, something that couldn’t have happened even five years ago. 


Neither the election of Barack Obama, nor the passing of Prop 8 represent God’s final will on earth. Obama’s election does not wipe out the vicious racism of centuries, and Prop 8 shows that there is still work to be done confronting the discrimination of Gay and Lesbian people. But they both represent some progress along the way. 

Praise God.

“The world only spins forward. We will be citizens. The time has come.” 

Angels in America, by Tony Kushner.


Comments read comments(2)
post a comment

posted November 7, 2008 at 12:29 pm

Paul, thank you for such thoughtful writing! As a gay man living in California, I knew there was a possibility that Prop 8 would pass, but I didn’t realize how much I was going to be affected by it emotionally.
I’m not married, but it still cut very deeply for me, when the realization really hit me on Wednesday morning that half of my neighbors in California still consider me as second-class, and worth less than they are as a human being. It really opened-up very old wounds (related to my sexuality) that I thought I was already able to heal. I barely cry, but I have found myself constantly tearing recently, whenever I think of what is currently happening, and of what lies for my future.
I keep thinking to myself, what about the young LGBT members out there that are not yet out of the closet? The ones that might still be fighting internal battles trying fully accept who they really are. How alone and low some of them might be feeling right now hearing about Prop 8 passing, along with the other hateful ballots that passed in other states. Why did nobody think about them before voting yes on Prop 8. This proposition is nothing but hateful bigotry to cause emotional harm unto other people, falsely disguised as trying to protect kids and marriage!

report abuse


posted November 7, 2008 at 5:32 pm

Praise God!!
Well i thought Obama was God.
according to this website he is the chosen one. Unbelievable!!

report abuse

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to and may be used by in accordance with the agreements.

Previous Posts

More blogs to enjoy!!!
Thank you for visiting Progressive Revival. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Faith, Media and Culture Prayer, Plain and Simple Happy Blogging!!!   ...

posted 2:50:10pm Aug. 27, 2012 | read full post »

Why Jews Around the World are Praying for the Victory of the Egyptian Uprising
Originally appeared on Tikkun Daily BlogEver since the victory over the dictator of Tunisia and the subsequent uprising in Egypt, my email has been flooded with messages from Jews around the world hoping and praying for the victory of ...

posted 1:48:39pm Feb. 01, 2011 | read full post »

When Generosity, Love, and Kindness are Public Policy, the Violence We Saw in Arizona will Dramatically Diminish
The attempted assassination of Congresswoman Giffords and the murder of so many others in Arizona has elicited a number of policy suggestions, from gun control to private protection for elected officials, to banning incitement to violence on ...

posted 2:44:04pm Jan. 19, 2011 | read full post »

The Spiritual Messages of Chanukah and Christmas -- and Their Downsides
Christmas and Chanukah share a spiritual message: that it is possible to bring light and hope in a world of darkness, oppression and despair. But whereas Christmas focuses on the birth of a single individual whose life and mission was itself ...

posted 12:59:53pm Dec. 02, 2010 | read full post »

Obama (and Biden) Have No Clue About What's Bothering Their Political Base
Shortly before the California Democratic primary in 2008, the San Fransisco Chronicle invited me to write a short article explaining why I, chair of the interfaithNetwork of Spiritual Progressives, was supporting Barack Obama. Like ...

posted 1:44:11pm Sep. 30, 2010 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.