What About Newt Gingrich?

As I wrote in my previous post (What About Mitt Romney?), I have asked the Lord for an outline of the Republican primary candidates. So far he has given me insight on three different candidates. Only two of them are still actively in the race, so I am sharing what the Lord gave me about those two first.

When I had the dream about Mitt Romney, he was instructing me in a way that gave me insight into his nature and character. The same thing happened with the dream I had about Newt Gingrich. I believe the Lord was giving me some insights into who Newt really is.

On the evening I had the dream about Newt, I had awakened knowing I had been dreaming about Newt, but I really couldn’t remember what it was about because it was so indistinct. I believe that is part of the message about Newt. We all think that we know him because he has been around for so long, but the passage of time, and the distortions of media and memory, have not helped us in our quest to understand this Republican candidate. Since I knew the Lord wanted to show me something beyond that, and help me understand Newt a bit more, I prayed and asked him to give me something I could remember. He graciously did.

In the second dream, Newt was showing me two different apartments. He first showed me the apartment of a man who was working for a living. The apartment was not fancy, but it wasn’t a hovel either. It was an adequate place to live. Then he took me to the apartment of someone whose housing was provided by the government. As we entered the apartment, I recognized the person who lived in this apartment because the person was a fairly well known Olympic athlete. I also noted that the apartment was a much, much nicer apartment than the one we had first seen. It was almost luxurious compared to the first apartment we had toured. It was obvious that Newt did not think that this was appropriate. He did not think that it was right that people who were working for a living were living in less luxurious apartments than those who were receiving their apartments as a part of the government’s welfare programs.

Of course, this dream reminded me of the welfare reform act that Bill Clinton signed into law in 1996. He and Newt Gingrich worked together to reform welfare in a way that empowered people. As Bill Clinton described it in an editorial in the New York Times,

“In my first State of the Union address, I promised to “end welfare as we know it,” to make welfare a second chance, not a way of life, exactly the change most welfare recipients wanted it to be.”

This reform passed with resounding bipartisan support, and had positive impact on the lives of many people. I believe that the main goal of this act, as outlined by President Clinton above, would be violated if we make not working more advantageous than working. That was the point of the dream. Newt wanted to show me the disparity between the working class apartment and the one provided by the government. I was seeing the Newt who is campaigning to help people help themselves.

When I was working out the interpretation of this dream, I also understood why an Olympian was living in the apartment. The United States government does not support our Olympic athletes. In fact, many of them eke out a living working at odd jobs while they train for the Olympics hoping to do well enough to achieve corporate sponsorships. They are often like the man living in the first apartment that Newt showed me. They work hard and live modestly as they pursue their goals. Even though they bring glory and honor to our nation when they win, we do not provide financially for them.

Unlike the United States, many governments support their Olympic athletes in some way. In fact, because they bring benefit and honor to their government and country when they are successful, some countries support their Olympians at quite a high standard.

I believe that this symbol reveals Newt’s heart a bit more. When we support people who are not producing or bringing tangible benefit to our nation in the same way that many governments support very fruitful members of their culture, we have strayed. When we support them at a higher level than truly productive members of our culture, something is fundamentally wrong. At that point we begin training people to be unproductive because it pays more.

Of course, I’m not saying that is the way things are in the United States at this moment. I do not know. What I do know is that Newt Gingrich does not want it to get that way. That, I believe, was the point of the dream.

While Newt comes with a fair amount of baggage because of his history, I know that the Tea Party would be comfortable with this core part of his belief system. Christians are all about forgiveness when someone repents over his past, as Newt has done, but that doesn’t automatically mean that we think such a person should be president. It also doesn’t mean that we believe they are disqualified because of their past. Our decision-making process is more complex than that. As the Lord gives us insights such as these dreams, he is helping us through the process.

Again, whether Newt is the best candidate or not, I do not know. I have had three dreams of this type. None of the dreams were an endorsement of a candidate, but highlighted the candidate’s heart or circumstance. I believe that will help us as we make our decisions.

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