The elections are now just 78 days away. Being a citizen of Pennsylvania, generally a swing state in presidential elections, I am already inundated, saturated, and frustrated by the television ads supporting both candidates in this election. Saturday morning, I received this Facebook post from a friend and another thoughtful disciple of Jesus Christ.
“I want to encourage all of my Christian FB friends. Do not let judgment, racism, classism or any other ungodly thing enter your heart in these days and months leading up to the elections. These political campaigns (on ALL sides) are aimed to divide people and pit you against each other. Always remember, we are in this world and participate in its processes but we are not of this world. Our allegiance is to GOD and each other as brothers and sisters in Christ (above any allegiance to a political party or candidate). Satan gets excited every 4 years. Do not let him use YOU as one of his devices. Be careful what you say and post and above all, be careful to “take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ.”
My friend did not tell me who to vote for. He is trusting my intelligence, conscience and faith to guide me in this process. He did remind me, however, of something that God’s Word teaches but not all Christians seem to heed. Our political allegiance or economic philosophy or cultural preferences should not supersede our commitment to Jesus Christ, and our promise to be His ambassadors and ministers of reconciliation in this world.
This does not permit me to abandon the political process as some have chosen. Nor does it permit me to demonize candidates nor shade the truth when it comes to speaking about them. It really doesn’t give me the luxury of being a single issue voter nor does it excuse me for voting without prayerfully reflecting on which candidate will best serve this nation as God has ordained government to serve the people for whom Christ died. In most elections, it rarely has made my choice simple nor has it allowed me to simply vote and then put my political attention on hold until the next election. If the person I voted for is elected, I must both pray for them regularly and hold them accountable for their leadership choices. If other candidate is elected, I must pray for them and hold them accountable for their leadership choices.
In voting, I respect that I live in a free society operating in a fallen world. No human leader will be perfect nor will I agree with every decision they make. Every human leader lives daily in the need of both repentance and forgiveness. Every human leader is ultimately accountable not only to the people who elected him, but to the God Who created him and Whose world, he holds in trust by the forbearance of God.
The only leader who deserves an unswerving “Yes” from me is God.
A human leader will ultimately earn my vote – by his character, his values, and his dreams for the nation that I love and of which I am a part.
(c) 2012 BY STEPHEN L DUNN