As I was spending time with God this morning, reading through the book of Romans, I ran into a particularly relevant chapter for our lives right now.
We are in the throes of a wild election cycle. All sides are shouting contradictory messages and accusations about one another. As Americans we should be participating in our democracy. The country has given us the right to be a part of deciding who will “rule” the nation and participation in that process is a positive good.
It is good to speak passionately for your candidate. (I understand how hard that is in modern politics, not just for this election) It is good to argue and debate with friends and family over who should be president and why your candidate is good and their candidate is bad. It’s even better when we debate the issues for which the candidates stand.
Come November 9th God calls us to change. In Romans 13:1-7 God tells us this “Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God.” We have a tough enough time responding positively to this statement…Just imagine how the recipients of Paul’s letter felt. The very authorities he was telling them were appointed by God were the ones persecuting and killing them.
Whoever ends up in the white house or the congress belongs there. Whether God has appointed them as a blessing for our nation or a judgment for our nation, we do not know. But we do know Jesus is still in charge of the universe. We do know God will be faithful to His church in the face of any government, whether it is one that directly opposes us or one that tries to pretend they are our friend and uses us for political gain. (many people have accused all political parties of these offenses…with good reason)
On November 9th another verse of the same passage also comes into play. “Render to all what is due them: tax to whom tax is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; and honor to whom honor.” That means that the most ardent Hillary Supporter, if Donald Trump wins, is to take down their signs, get on their knees and start praying for President Trump, and probably post to Facebook in an entirely non-snarky way about praying for the new president… This also means that the the most ardent Trump Supporter, if Hillary Clinton wins, is to take down their signs, get on their knees and start praying for President Clinton, and probably post to Facebook in an entirely non-snarky way about praying for the new president…
Protestations about how so and so is “not my president” or “I didn’t vote for them” may fly in our country, but they cannot fly in our faith. We cannot be the witness God desires if we disobey His word in this most heated of arenas. So on November 9 I will set aside my preference and accept whoever wins our national election. I will give them honor and I will pray for them.
What will you do…?
Your Loving Pastor,