On the swearing in of a new president, how should we pray? When I was growing up on an Oregon farm, my hippie mom was one of the only parents I knew at our rural church who’d voted for Jimmy Carter instead of Ronald Reagan. That could have created a split, but we continued sitting in the same pews and singing the same songs as before the divisive 1980 election. Mom didn’t sniff out which businesses had supported which candidate or pull us out of our church-supported school. She got up the same as every other morning, pulled on her rubber boots and went about the work that needed to be done, feeding our sheep and gathering the morning eggs.
For months – OK, years – I watched the tightly wound rows of two braided throw rugs pull apart. One under the kitchen sink. One by the back door. Each time someone stepped on them, the tears grew longer. And each time I tossed the rugs in the washing machine, I silently swore I’d stitch the rows back together. But I kept putting it off. By now the tears were so large that my favorite rug, shaped like a heart, was unravelling from the inside out, threatening to come apart in two pieces. Finally I could stand it no longer.