LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Prayer is the answer

There’s an old saying, supposedly from St. Augustine (354-430 C.E.): “Pray as if everything depends on God and work as if everything depends on you.” So it’s not a question of either/or, but rather it’s both/and. I’m writing this on the feast of St. Stephen (December 26). The Acts of the Apostles tells us that those who stoned Stephen placed their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Saul. And we hear Stephen praying: “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” We also know that later Saul met Jesus on the road to Damascus and became a changed man.
One of my daily prayers is for our civil authorities and especially for the conversion of Donald Trump. But I only say this after I say: for my own conversion. I find this a hard tightrope to walk: to pray like this without judging myself to be better than DJT. I know that only God can judge a person’s heart, but I just can’t stand about 98 percent of what DJT does because I think it goes against the Gospel message. (I do like the prison reform legislation.)
I realize all too well that DJT has a lot of leadership ability. That is evident from having garnered over 60 million votes in 2016. You don’t do that without leadership ability. For me, however, it is a question of what direction the leadership goes. On my better days, I keep wondering what might happen if DJT has a Damascus moment. Would I believe it? With so many lies already, I’d be very slow. But with actions following, maybe I could believe. I don’t doubt the power of God, but I do doubt DJT’s willingness to accept the grace of God. I’ve never seen any evidence of such willingness. May God open my heart to believe.
So, while I pray, I will continue to do what I can to push against DJT’s activities. I fear for the future of our country and our world if he is unchecked.