Many years ago, when I was still in high school, my adopted African brother experienced his first U. S. presidential election.
My brother had so many questions. He asked, “So what happens now?” I explained that there would be a ceremony and after that the current president would step down and the new man would assume power.
He was astounded and continued his questions, “What? Will one man just walk out of the White House and another just walk in? No fighting? No guns? How can that be?”
I assured him that was exactly what was going to happen.
In his short life at that point, he had never experienced what we often take for granted—the peaceful transfer of power. He had seen transfers of power in his country but with them had come assignations, armed soldiers in trucks sometimes shooting randomly in the streets, a military coup d’état, and even a civil war; but never in his life had he witnessed one person just stepping down and another assuming power.
Having seen life through my brother’s eyes during that conversation so many years ago, I have never taken our peaceful transfer of power for granted since.
Today as I watched the inauguration, it is my hope that regardless of a person's political views, all Americans will realize what a treasure we have in this country we are blessed to call ours.
"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone." Romans 12:18 (NIV)