Unlike the usual election year, this year’s headlines have not been plagued by every political nuance available and instead has been full of mostly COVID-19 themed titles—until recently. However; that does not change that it is still an election year, and one way or another there will be a vote for the who will serve as President of the United States for the next four years. It seems as though this year seems to be more polarizing than most, maybe that’s because it’s hard to remember the climate of elections 4, 8, 12 years ago—or perhaps it’s because as a culture we have inflated this decision to hinge all matters of life and death on who will be at the helm of the country. If you read through social media posts, comments, read headlines, etc…you’ll know that based on viral speak, who you intend to vote for determines your intelligence, ethics, and morality and sends it all to its most extreme. If you vote one way, you hate this, another way, you have no respect for that, and so on. All of that being fueled by the concern that the next president sets the fate of our nation. Christian, I am here to remind you, that our hope—nor anyone’s hope-- does not lie in our country’s leader.
Quick disclaimer: yes, voting is important. Yes, Christians should educate themselves on political issues. Yes, Christians should be involved in politics. Yes, we should vote for the party that most aligns with our values and biblical worldview. But we do all of this as merely ambassadors who are trying to serve our temporary residence well.
With that being said, here are things we may need to remind ourselves in this season:
- People should know more about your view of Jesus Christ, than your political views.
- This point was pulled from a recent series we did with our students on Wednesday night. It is a great reminder that we have to be on guard about what we say, how we say it, and what we post. Out of the overflow of our heart the mouth speaks (or fingers type). We communicate what we care about. Our conversations and social media profiles can be a clear heart check about what is important to us. What do people need more, a cutting remark about how you think their view on something is stupid, or a message about where your eternal hope comes from?
- Do not let your political mission forsake your Christian mission.
- How you vote and what you vote for is important. Campaigning and trying to help people see the other side of an issue is important. Alienating someone from ever speaking to you because of these issues, is counterproductive to the Great Commission. If Paul can be all things to all people for the sake of the Gospel, we as Christians can bite our tongue for the sake of maintaining a conversation that could lead to the Gospel.
- Be more concerned about how God will judge your neighbor, than your nation.
- Whether or not our side wins in an election has little to do with how God will judge our nation. Our nation is judged by the hearts and actions of the people that make up that nation. And all of our hearts have been plagued with sin. If we want to see change in our country, it does not come from elected leaders, it comes from caring Christians.
We are not voting for hope this year. The only people who should vote in fear of the unknown are those who don’t know Christ. For believers, our hope is secure, our ultimate future is known, and our life is eternal. Therefore, use this season to share your peace and hope with others.