Thursday, January 26, 2017

Reclaiming Hope by Michael Wear

This is a very good book as it looks at how a person of faith maneuvers in the political realm and how that political process can obliterate someone's faith-stance.

Michael Wear was the Director of Faith Outreach for President Obama's 2012 campaign. He also played a role in the 2008 campaign.

This book is his recollection of some of the situations.

The first three chapters set the stage and give you a little insight into how Wear became part of the Obama circle. Chapters four and five quickly summarize the two terms of the Obama presidency and what sort of faith issues they tackled. This includes pulling out a few of the speeches that were given and what Wear's observations were afterwards.

Chapter six touches on the President's position of abortion.

Chapter seven highlights how the administration pushed through Obamacare.

Chapter eight reflects on the President's position on gay marriage.

Chapter ten is basically the last straw as Wear sets to leave the White House due to a number of things but he writes how horrible the 2012 campaign was and how totally opposite the feeling was compared to 2008 - no longer were they a campaign of unity and bringing a broad coalition. In 2012, the Obama team went to win with the least common denominator.

I thought this book was a great read. Wear is a man of faith who agreed with many of the positions President Obama stood for while also disturbed by how political gain and "winning" trumped faith conscience time and time again.

I walked away from reading this book understanding President Obama to give great speeches about faith and maybe even wanting to do the right thing. But when it came time to compare standing by faith conviction vs. political winning, he always took the political route.

Wear often questioned whether the President believed what he was saying in some of his faith speeches or if it was simply to score political points.

After reading this book, I'm fairly convinced President Obama wanted to win so everything else came second.

I appreciated Wears words on how poisonous our political spheres have become. No longer can officials disagree and debate, now they have to politically destroy each other in order to win the day.

With all the dreary look-back, especially with the 2012 campaign seeing a once hope-led candidate try everything to destroy an honorable opponent and turning their back to an evangelical ally, Wear is still hopeful for people of faith in the political realm.

Oh if our politics could become civil. If we could disagree without trying to destroy character.

This book was provided for review, at no cost, by Thomas Nelson Publishing.  

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