God in City Hall

Dear Editor:Last Sunday I was talking on the phone with a friend from Northern California. One of her interests is teaching others how to stay healthy by eating organic and natural foods as well as taking more responsibility for their own health and well being. However, this Sunday, she proceeded to tell me that she was giving up because by and large few people, if any, were taking her good advice. Her desire and hope for others' wellbeing was falling on deaf ears. I tried to encourage her not to give up and that it was a good thing that she was doing for others. Then the next day during my lunch break I opened my Gideon New Testament, Psalms & Proverbs in order to read a Scripture passage and turned to the index page of "Where to Find Help when..." and with the conversation with my friend still fresh in my mind I stopped at the entry: "Faith Fails". In other words, Where to find help when our faith fails. The index pointed me to Psalms 42:5, which reads: "Why art thou cast down, O my soul? And why art thou disquieted in me? Hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance." Like my friend we often become discouraged and lose hope and are ready to give up. God teaches us here to put our hope in Him, "Hope thou in God". Why do we lose hope? People often place their hope in man, and leaders in general, but repeatedly leaders have failed us. Others place their hopes in a political party, forgetting the warnings of our Founding Fathers, such as General George Washington, as to the dangers of political parties to our government and country as a whole. Indeed any human institution that grows big enough, such as our two major political parties, will become corrupt given what we know about human nature, and will certainly let us down. Yet others place their hope and trust in their money and jobs. The mighty dollar is no longer what it once was and over 100 banks have recently failed all around us. Good paying manufacturing jobs have left our state and country altogether in recent years. Then some of us have placed our hope in government. We believed that government would take care of us from cradle to grave. But government too has let us down as we see the erosion of our unalienable rights, undeclared wars with no end in sight and an out of control deficit spending. I'm referring primarily to our federal government, regardless of administrations. Perhaps we should pause and ask what we can do lest we go even deeper into discouragement and fear of the direction and future of our country. In Downey we are blessed to have had great leadership over the years so as to prevent financial distress. While we may not solve the nation's problems or even bail out California with our city savings, we can at least be a bright beacon of light and hope as we remind ourselves, and those that are watching and listening, to place our hope and trust in God alone, while at the same time praying for our President, Governor, Mayor and all those in authority, as well as praying for our businesses that growth and prosperity would prevail out of the tumult of discouragement and despair that many are suffering today. Come to think of it, this is just what was proposed before a plenary session of our City Council on August 11 by a concerned Downey resident. He proposed that Downey follow the more than 50 other California cities that have already prominently displayed our motto "In God We Trust" inside the council chambers for all to see and be continually reminded of. It is now up to the good people of Downey to contact their district Council Members as well as Councilmember at-large Luis Marquez, urging them to bring this matter up for discussion and a subsequent vote at an upcoming City Council meeting. They can be reached at City Hall by calling (562) 904-7274. Let's let that phone ring off the hook! -Dan Cristea, Downey

********** Published: September 25, 2009 - Volume 8 - Issue 23