An Open Letter to President Elect Barack Obama
Dear President Elect Obama,
Congratulations on being elected to hold the highest office in the free world. You have taken on a difficult and daunting job.
I did not vote for you.
This is no secret.
The fact remains though, that you will be our president in a few short months. I am bound by the fourth commandment to act in a respectful manner towards you, whether I agree with your views or not. I am admonished in Martin Luther’s Small Catechism that “We should fear and love God so that we do not despise or anger our parents or other authorities, but honor them, serve and obey them, love and cherish them.”
I am oddly grateful for an opportunity that your ascending to the office of the President affords me. Since the time that my children were very small, I have had a photo of President Bush displayed in our living room. Ours is a patriotic family. I have taught my children to respect those in authority. Friends and family who have noticed this display have asked what we would do if a Democrat were elected president. We have always responded that if the new president wished to gift us with a portrait, we would display the leader of the free world in our home.
I have the opportunity to teach my children a new kind of honor and respect, the honor and respect that is more difficult. It is easy to love and respect a beloved parent, it is harder to respect a neglectful or abusive one. Likewise, it is easy to respect a president who shares your views, it is harder to show respect to someone who shares few if any of your ideals. Thank you for this challenge and opportunity.
Mr. Obama, rest assured that I will pray for you, as I have prayed for Mr. Bush. I pray that you can lead our country in such a way that we can come together as one nation under God. I pray for your family, as the White House can be a hard place to raise a family.
God Bless you, Mr. Obama, and God Bless America.