When This Election is Over ...

I am flabbergasted.  I am utterly and totally dumbfounded by what I am observing in this year’s election.

Allow me to pick my jaw up off the floor … take a deep breath … and then continue.

I promise not to rant, not to call names and not to polarize.

But I do not promise not to point a finger or two.  If it’s pointed at you … I don’t apologize.

Politics are often ugly.  Politicians create messy situations and uncomfortable climates for many of us who tend to be idealists in matters of integrity and honor.

I can file all of that bureaucratic, verbal vomit under the unfortunate title of “It’s What Politicians Do”.

But come on … must we all act like politicians?!  Must we all sling mud, call names, preach false rhetoric and drink the poison?!  Must we?!

What I am observing on social media is not mere mud-slinging … it is feces-throwing! (Pardon my language!)

When this election is over, there will still be a lost and dying world who is desperately in need of a Savior!  Will you have spouted your personal political beliefs to the extent that you have lost your ability to minister to people who are different than you?

Will you have sacrificed your call to evangelism and your commitment to love others on the altar of opinion and politics?  Will you?!

I love America!  I love the freedom we experience here and the ability to elect those who lead us.

I love freedom of speech … freedom of religion (such as it is) … and freedom of the press.

But never forget, men and women of God, that you are called to exhibit the fruit of another Kingdom while living in this earthly kingdom.

Love is more important than being a clanging cymbal on Facebook.

Joy is more life-giving and life-changing than a conservative or a liberal ideology will ever be!

Kindness is what we are all called to … especially in this day of political division.

I think that God cares more about your heart and your words than He cares about what happens at political debates.

What happens at your home address is of much more eternal importance than what happens at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

I think that the good, good Father is weeping over how Christians are treating one another as they disagree over Republican and Democratic issues.

I believe that Jesus is calling all of us, who care about the Kingdom that can never be shaken, to a greater display of kindness and love than ever before.

As I observed the rash of comments and the sheer number of opinions that were rapid-firing on social media during the last presidential debate, I couldn’t help but wonder what would happen if each one of us were on our knees rather than on our computers.

Hell shakes when a believer in Jesus Christ hits the floor on their knees.  Hell roars with approval when a believer in Jesus Christ throws expletives, angry opinions and divisive ideology at others who are looking for answers.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I believe that it is vitally important to stand up for righteous causes and for Christ and His Kingdom.  However, please make sure that the cause you are standing up for is a Biblical cause and not a mere cultural persuasion.

It is a noble call, indeed, to stand for Christ and His Kingdom in this world of compromise and bombastic pride. 

But while you are standing up for a righteous and noble cause, do it in such a way that you reveal a loving and kind heart toward those who stand against you.

I think that the thing that grieved me the most this week was a comment made by someone who said, “If you vote for that candidate you must not be a Christian.”

What?! The last time that I checked, it wasn’t up to me to examine someone’s heart based upon political persuasion.

I know many, many brothers and sisters in the Lord who are voting for Hillary.  I know many, many fellow Christians who are voting for Donald Trump.  I know many, many believers in Jesus Christ who are voting for a third party candidate.  And, I know many, many disciples of Jesus Christ who are choosing to write in a candidate’s name.

I promise not to judge your level of Christianity based on which lever you pull on November 8.  Please … just assure me that you will vote and that you will pray.

I have deep opinions concerning this election and I also have retching sorrow over where we are as a nation.  How I wish anyone else was running for President!

I am reminded that a man or a woman is not our answer … Christ is the answer for what ails America.  He is the hope to which we all must cling in this political maelstrom.

I believe that what we are observing this year is simply a reflection of where we are as a nation.

"Societies, like individuals, reap what they sow. Where virtue is disdained and vice is glorified, corruption and demagoguery are the harvest." Robert George, Princeton

And how do we change where we are as a nation?  Will we change America with violent opinions, divisive articles or by arguing with people who formerly were dear friends?

Will we change the heart of America by playing one-upmanship with others who are made in the image of Christ?

Will we change anyone’s opinion by posting yet another article that may or may not be true but that serves to prove your personal point?!

We will change this nation by reaching out with human kindness, by committing to prayer and by loving those whose believe system is different than our own.

We will change this nation by having civil conversations laced with understanding and respect.

We will change this nation by making this election about principles rather than about people.

We will change this nation by choosing to stay on our knees not just every four years but every single day.

You are called to make a difference, my friend.  Do not take this assignment lightly but make sure that rather than cultivating an atmosphere of divisive animosity you are encouraging a culture of wisdom and understanding.

And now … would you take just one more minute and pray with me?

“Lord Jesus, we need You.  We need Your power, Your wisdom and Your intervention.  Father, help us to speak like You would speak, to act like You would act, and to stand up for the righteousness that actually matters beyond political opinion.  Father, we pray for America.  You are the only One Who can make America great again!  And so we humbly ask You to heal our land.  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen.”

“And if My people who are called by My name humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” – II Chronicles 7:14