Weeping may last for a night but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5). That is the story of Joe Biden, who was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States on Wednesday, January 20, 2021. As President of the United States, popularly acclaimed as the most powerful nation on earth, Joe Biden now rules the world. In the world of greatness, he has clocked in.
Behind Bidens lofty ascent to global limelight lies a hidden past, dotted by insufferable challenges. He treaded the rough path and survived a ‘winter of peril’. As a child, he had overcome a bad stutter (same like me). It is possible that the enemy saw his star afar and schemed to tie his tongue in silence.
Biden suffered two brain aneurysms in his middle age. A brain aneurysm is a bulge or ballooning in a blood vessel in the brain, which can rupture and cause bleeding into the brain. Biden would not have been President today, if he had succumbed to this life threatening disease. From the valley of the shadow of death, he emerged to rule the world.
In 1972, Biden suffered a devastating tragedy when he lost his wife and daughter in a car accident. His two sons, Beau and Hunter were also injured in the crash. The accident happened few weeks after he was elected to the Senate. Again the devil tried to stop him in his track. This loss weighed heavily on Biden that his close friends advised him to quit the Senate. But he refused to quit. He chewed his pain and moved on.
Former President Barack Obama, in his book, A Promised Land, revealed that Biden had early political successes and also suffered embarrassing defeats. Tragedy and setbacks struck him hard, yet he refused to bend his knees in defeat. Although he was scarred by tragedies, he pressed on for higher goals. Biden laid his hand on 127-year-old family Bible to take his oath of service on Wednesday, a public affirmation of his deep-seated conviction that by strength shall no man prevail.
I had reflected on what might have happened if Biden had heeded the counsel of friends and colleagues to quit. Perhaps, he might have burrowed deeper in grief and submerged his political career. The loss of his wife and daughter could have made him bitter and aggressive. Such an irretrievable loss would have shattered his world and forced him to bury his sorrow in drug and wine. If he had listened to discouraging voices, perhaps, he could have plunged himself into depth of misery. In fact, Obama said Biden had the buoyancy of character, and never allowed the scars of tragedy and setbacks make him bitter or cynical.
What traits did Biden have that led him to the finishing line? First, he had clear knowledge of the political terrain and planted himself firmly in the corridors of power for over two decades. During that period, he cultivated new relationships and watered existing ones.
Although older in age, he served a younger President. Pride did not inflate his ego or make him susceptible to an overambitious drive. Wherever duty called, he answered. In the discharge of his duties, he amassed wisdom and was always the last voice at cabinet meetings during his tenure as Vice President.
In all his political positions, Biden chose service above pecuniary interests. He befriended honour and detested villainy. He schooled himself in virtue and never raised his voice in antagonism, even against his professed rival. In fact, he played politics by the rule. With wisdom, he unhinged doors that impudent opponents locked against him. Above all, he built his faith on God, and started his tenure as 46th POTUS by kneeling on the feet of Christ.
Let ponder on these words that they may take flesh in us. This message is for somebody out there struggling in the lurch with adversarial forces of life. It is possible that the world might oppose your aspirations with all the forces it could muster, and you find yourself crashing to ground zero. Perhaps, the sudden death of your loved ones has made your life miserable. Maybe, your academic, business or political career has been torpedoed by a furious storm or unforeseen incidents. It could be your health or the latest medical report that has kept you worried beyond words.
Dont lose hope yet. Your day of glory is coming. It is the darkest night that reveals the brightest stars. Decide to stay alive, and do not surrender to the threats of death. At this season of death in the world, you have good reasons to stay alive. I can see your star rising in the firmament. Although the cloud may gather, be assured that your star will still shine.
Few weeks into this new year, I heard a distressing news of two sisters that died few weeks apart. When I spoke with the bereaved sister, I reminded her not to mourn like those without hope. Drawing from the Biblical bank of hope, I told her that tragedies of life will come like a flood to sweep us away, but our faith in God will always raise a buffer for our weary soul. Although there is no immunity against earthly troubles, there is an unfailing promise of God to comfort and heal the broken-hearted.
Are you among those that fret at the sight of battle? Those who crave for easy victory do not know the might of God. It is in the thick of battle that God manifests his awesome power. Moses must stand before Pharaoh to ask for freedom! God does not blow away our enemies; sometimes, he allows us to fight the battle.
Prepare for tough battles. May your road be rough, wrote Tai Solarin. Gird on your loin cloth. Season of tough times is here already. Rather than shrink in fear, put on your gospel armour. Wear it night and day. With God on our side, we fight to win.
God often refines his people in the furnace of affliction. A winner is often forged from the crucible of hardship and setbacks. The battles you fight and the hardships you face take you closer to your destiny.
At 76, Biden has already passed the Biblical age of promise: three scores and ten. Although the tell-tale signs of age are all over him, God wouldn’t let him retire without fulfilling his destiny. If Abraham could father a son at 100 years, and Sarah at 90, there is no promise that God cannot fulfil.
Keep working dutifully. Keep walking diligently. Life is a potpourri of sorrow and joy, victory and loss, happiness and grief, success and failure, breakthrough and breakdown. Whatever life throws at you, never give up. Always look up and count the stars. One of them is yours. No matter the years it might take, you, too, have a date with destiny.
DISCLAIMER : Opinion articles are solely the responsibility of the author and does not necessarily reflect the views of the publishers of ElombahNews!
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