I have started to write this post about a dozen times. One such reached 2,200 words before I closed it. Two thousand, two hundred angry, funny, sarcastic, bitter, angst-ridden words.
And that was just one of my twelve attempts to encapsulate the events since November 3. And what is likely to follow.
Thanks be to God, I never published them. Something (someone) told me they were not right. Accurate, perhaps. Honest, for sure. A couple might have been profound.
But they weren’t right because they failed to move the story along. They admired the problem and warned of the consequences. But they didn’t advance the plot.
If there’s ever been a plot that needs advancing, it is this one. And this one goes something like this: A great nation rose, dominated, and fell when a majority of its members lost touch with the country’s founding principles.
America is done. Over. Caput. Its heart has stopped beating. Its soul has moved on. The country many of us fought for in the service is no more. We have no flag to salute, no country to defend, no national purpose to pursue.
There will be no more elections, so no need for political parties. Oh, there will be “Election Days.” But the outcome of those “elections” will have been decided and programmed well in advance, just like November 3 and January 5. Fools will still donate to campaigns and get up early to vote believing their votes count.
Coming to grips with that bitter reality is like coming to grips with the death of loved one. The death of a child. Or a parent.
Coming to grips with what lies ahead is even worse. The most dangerous country in history is now in the uncontested control of a malignant and hateful oligarchy. The US armed forces are now prepared to kill off any remaining opposition to that oligarchy. Armed mobs have a license to kill dissidents.
America is dead, and it’s not coming back. The forces of evil were so opposed to Trump’s vision of a Great America, they are determined to abolish America altogether. And they have what it takes to do so.
So what do we do? How do we move the plot forward?
We forgive them.
“And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.”
If we don’t forgive, we will not be pardoned.
My friends will be angry at me for writing this, for even thinking this. But it’s the only way to move the plot forward, and I must move the plot forward.
Yesterday, I came across an article about forgiveness. An exorcist—a man who battles demons for a living—says that, until we forgive our persecutors, we are stuck.
He explains that forgiveness is an act of the will, not an emotion. Just as theological love is an act of will. Father Jim Blount, the exorcist, provides four very difficult but necessary steps to forgiveness:
Make an Act of the Will.
Bless your persecutors.
Give thanks to God and to your persecutors.
The reason is simple: God permits “bad” things to happen in order to advance His divine plan. His divine plan is for everyone to love Him and obey Him. If we’d all just get onboard with that plan, there would be no “bad.”
Demons exist to inflict these bad things on us. We know from scripture and from the experiences of exorcists that demons cannot do anything to us without God’s permission, and the best way to avoid the bad is to remain in a state of sanctifying grace. (Sanctifying grace is not a guarantee that nothing bad will happen, but people who remain in grace tend to thank God for their ailments as those ailments allow them to join their sufferings to Christ’s.)
When an entire nation turns away from God’s grace, you can expect demons to run amok. And, when demons run amok, things fall apart.
I can’t make everybody in America turn to God, but I can forgive everyone who persecutes me or will persecute me. The cup will not pass me by, but I can learn to accept it as coming from God.
I believe that most people who think like me will face a bitter persecution, not for four years, but for the rest of our lives. This persecution could include imprisonment, torture, extreme poverty, unemployability, homelessness. (I’m just listing what powerful Democrats and oligarchs have called for.) As Our Lady of Akita described our future to Sister Agnes Sasagawa in 1973, “survivors…will envy the dead.”
This vision of our future is not new. I wrote it about it on August 10, 2018 in the post What Should We Do Next?
For the time being, President Trump holds our torturers and persecutors at bay. But Trump won’t be president forever. He could be out of office a year from now should the Democrats take over the House and Senate in January. And, if Trump is impeached and convicted, the future President Pence has little chance of winning in 2020.
We could then fight a bloody civil war. It would be a low-level war fought in small skirmishes. A guerrilla war that lasts for decades.
We are a week away from Trump’s departure from the White House. Nothing has happened to avert the grim future I saw coming in 2018.
In that same article, I saw our only hope is God. Not that He will miraculously vanquish our oppressors, but that He will give us the grace to bear torture well.
Our early Christian fathers and mothers didn’t fight Rome with arrows and fire. They fought evil with good works, prayer, and hope in Christ. They were tortured and died following the plan. The Plan.
The previous day, August 9, I had written about the plan in Crawling Back to Happiness and Freedom:
If you want happiness (aka blessedness) you choose God through Jesus as your lord and master. You literally surrender yourself to God.
The plan isn’t easy, at least, not emotionally. Forgiving our persecutors takes grace. Living the plan takes grace. We can do neither on our own.
Therefore, while reserving the right to protest, object, resist, and defy my oppressors, I forgive them. Using the formula offered by exorcist Father Jim Blount:
I forgive [Name of Persecutor] in the Name of Jesus Christ, now and forever.
I bless you, [Name of Persecutor], richly, in the name of Jesus Christ, now and forever.
I thank you Lord, and I thank you, [Name of Persecutor], for the wound that heals.
I praise you Lord and your Blessed Mother and I glorify you for your heavenly plan that is saving me and leading me to perfect joy.
Forgiveness does not require that I trust these people. It does not mean I submit to their evil. (I submit only to God.) It means I forgive them and I will the good for them.
And “the good” is that they come into the sanctifying grace of God. Which would be good for them and for the whole world.