The one thing that bugs me about Palpatine is that he’s a total downer. Everything is bad about the world. When Princess Amadala comes to Coruscant to plead her case to the senate and to the chancellor, Palpatine talks about how horrible things have been going. He then talks about how bad the chancellor is. He complains about people. He complains about who they act or how they talk.
And in the show The Clone Wars, it’s even worse. He just brings everyone down. It’s like the saying, one bad apple ruins the bunch. And he’s a big Sith apple in that bunch. Of course, you can’t expect the lord of the Sith to be all happy clappy, but still, you’d think he’d be kinda happy that he’s ruining the lives of so many people and going to execute Order 66 here soon. Right?
But he doesn’t really know that there’s something better. It’s always bad. It’s always something wrong something that needs to be fixed. But he does something even worse. He teaches Anakin to do something called compartmentalizing. That’s where you place different parts of your life into different compartments and not let them touch or interact. Palpatine teaches Anakin that the force is part of his professional life and not part of his personal life. In fact, in the end, he gets Anakin to believe that the force is so part of his professional life that it can’t even save Padame from dying. He keeps so many things in different compartments that eventually he becomes a walking compartment of parts (okay, bad joke).
Calvinism takes it a bit differently. This idea of things being compartmentalized doesn’t work. No. Instead all of your life belongs to God. Not just in the morning. Not just in the afternoon. Not just when you’re at church or with friends who are “spiritual.” No. It is in every waking moment of your life. What is part of your everyday waking moment of your life? God is.
Now, what about Calvinism? Every moment of every day belongs to God. Every moment of every day you spend with God. You take time every moment of everyday to seek God, to worship God, to pray to Him.
I like this line from Psalm 84
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. Psalm 84:10
Just one moment, one day with God, in his presence is better than anything else. Palpatine would rather have things his way. Of course, for him, all things are evil. And Anakin fell for it. Palpatine was the ruler of all the known Galaxy. He had it all. Yet, to tell the truth, it is better to be the doorman at the house of the Lord than be the right hand man of Palpatine.
Now, think about having everyday being with God. Every moment even as the doorkeeper of the house of the lord is better than having it all like Anakin and Palpatine.
To tell the truth, in all his Sithfulness, Palpatine abused the Force. He used it to his advantage, he manipulated it, he messed with people’s minds with it. Now, of course, the Force is not God. God is God alone. He is the one true God. Holy and mighty. But God isn’t one to be manipulated nor does he manipulate us.
Instead, he calls us to follow Him and spend every day with Him. So, for me, better is one day with my God, then living it up with Palpatine on Coruscant. And each and every day is even better than that.