Inauguration Day offers fresh start

President-elect Barack Obama speaks during a campaign stop in 2008. He takes over the Oval Office on Tuesday, January 20.

by Joe Buck Coates – [email protected]

A new era begins in America come 11:00 a.m. Central Time next Tuesday, January 20. Presdent-elect Obama becomes our 44th president, and President Bush will retire to his ranch in Crawford, TX.

The day will be a fresh start to the next four years, although it has been shrouded in bad news of a many sorts, lately. Obama will have to tackle several domestic issues almost immediately, plus the yoke of the Israeli-Hamas conflict he will assume and have to work through from Minute 1 of his presidency, among many foreign issues he will be presented with. He must, as they say, hit the ground running.

What we as a country are charged with is this: Whether or not you supported Obama in the 2008 election is of no consequence right now. He is going to be our next president on January 20. Your support in the form of allowing him time to get a handle on things is crucial at this point. Pray for him and the other leaders of our country-Dems, Repubs, or otherwise. Pray for their decisions to be made based on what’s right, not on what’s popular. Pray that the disagreements between and among our nation’s leaders will end with better cooperation for the good of America.

Pray for healing in our country. Pray for American strength through democracy abroad. Pray for God to turn the tide of secularism that is taking over the most fundamental elements of our society. And, pray for forgiveness of each other and for ourselves for not loving each other as Jesus taught.

Bush deserves better treatment

President Bush’s last press conference on Monday was officially the last stand he will make for his presidency. Talking for several minutes–and probably for what seemed an eternity for a couple of reporters–he defended his decisions with passion and fervor, not backing down from any question, nor wavering in his answers. And, after eight long years in office and dealing with a bunch of folks who never liked him from the start, I imagine that he let off some steam in a gauged sort of way.

Many members of the elite media will disagree, but history will prove that Bush, while not the best or most effective leader America has had, has done a solid job as leader of our nation.

Back in 2001, when all the dust had settled from the 2000 elections and Bush had assumed his role at the top, almost immediately he was faced with what would be his presidency. Many people have forgotten that our whole world changed on September 11 of that year. What followed was the uniting of America in ways that our country hadn’t experienced for at least 60 years.

 Bush, in his role as president, was tasked with making decisions that are beyond our realm of understanding until the end of his second term. His choices were to ‘man-up’ or crumple in the hand of the terrorists like a piece of paper. I believe that he made his choice loud and clear. For the 7+ years since, no other terrorist attack has occurred on American soil, and that is Bush’s hallmark. If he has done nothing else, this alone is an enormous feat.

Along the way of his presidency missteps were made, but Bush held tenaciously to what he thought was right, to make a long story short. I believe that his decisions were made on his faith. He has drawn strength from his family, too, and has set a good example for America and the rest of the world, like it or not.

President Obama is a charismatic person and seems to have a strong will to do what is right. He will stand on his own two feet, come the afternoon of 20 January. If he follows Bush’s example–drawing on faith and the strength of his family–he should do well.

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