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The Audacity of Hope

I’ve never followed politics much, let alone American politics. But I like Obama. Catapulted to fame at the 2004 Democratic National Convention, he’s hard not to like. See the big speech at youtube part1 and part2.

I’ve been skimming through his book “The audacity of hope” and it offers an inside look into the mind of a quickly rising star.

He comments on everything from faith, to the world outside America, to gay marriage, to his own family life. I find he has a remarkable way of writing with both humility and conviction.

I like how he shares gut reactions without much fact checking at times. He comments on how he visited google and the new hires seemed to be half asian, and he wondered where all the blacks and latinos were.

He has an interesting take on people who hammer at him for supporting abortion, he writes

…very few women made the decision to terminate a pregnancy casually; that any pregnant woman felt the full force of the moral issues involved and wrestled with her conscience when making that heart-wrenching decision; that I feared a ban on abortion would force women to seek unsafe abortions, as they had once done in this country and as they continued to do in countries that prosecute abortion doctors and the women who seek their services.

His thoughts on what happened to the church are also perceptive

a parallel universe emerged, a world not only of revivals and thriving ministries but also of Christian television, radio, universities, publishers, and entertainment, all of which allowed the devout to ignore the popular culture as surely as they were being ignored.

My favorite chapter had less to do with politics and seemed to almost be a dedication to his wife who has supported him throughout all the strain. He shares about how grateful he is for the precious family he’s been blessed with. He writes of his daughter…

Malia took another sip of water and kissed me on the cheek. “I’m glad you’re home,” she said. Before I could answer, she had turned around and started back out onto the field. And for an instant, in the glow of the late afternoon, I thought I saw my older daughter as the woman she would become, as if with each step she were growing taller, her shape filling out, her long legs carrying her into a life of her own.

This part just makes my heartache as I look at my own daughter, and she’s only seven months old!

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