I don’t like to talk politics, but I’m going to talk politics. If that makes you cringe you’ll need to forgive me. When I was away we elected a new President. I really didn’t leave the country to avoid the election, but it did work out that way. I wanted to share a few brief thoughts as we come out of a politically divisive season.
We are called to be gospel-loving, Christ-exalting people. Our identity is not in a political party. Christians are not primarily Republicans, Democrats, or Independents. I can’t stress this enough. We all have an opinion. We may be politically involved, but we are not politically consumed. Our hope is not wrapped up in the man or woman who is President. When our joy springs from our political leader, we are setting ourselves up for disappointment. We will be disappointed because political leaders are people and people are flawed. If you don’t believe me skim through the Old Testament and see how it plays out for every single king. They all have regrettable moments, except for One.
Being gospel-loving and Christ-exalting people means we pray for our leaders. We pray for our leaders even when we don’t agree with our leaders or even like our leaders. Pastor Tony Evens said, “Honor the position even when you disagree with the person.” Our leaders are not in the position they are in because they ran a good campaign. Our sovereign God placed them there for a purpose. Pray for Donald Trump. Pray that he would have wisdom, courage, and integrity as a leader. Pray that he would honor human life from the womb to the tomb. Pray that he would value and respect all people as created in the image of God. Pray that God would humble him because God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Pray for him more than you criticize him. Pray for him more than you applaud him. Pray for him. He needs it.
Being gospel-loving and Christ-exalting people means we hold our leaders to a higher standard regardless of political party. Life is complex. I understand that not everything is black and white, but some things are black and white. There are issues that Christians care about because we are Christians. We follow King Jesus. We are called to be different. When it comes to leadership character always counts. All the talent, money, and power in the world may cover up a multitude of sins, but it won’t for long. The Bible is filled with story after story that prove this point. Read about Samson, Saul, or Solomon. They all had lots of talent and a ton of resources, but it didn’t go well for them. In the long run the absence of character will result in the presence of problems.
Being gospel-loving and Christ-exalting people means we live in unity as we experience the tension of our differences and diversity. It’s altogether possible the person sitting next to you may not be on the same political page as you. So please, whatever you do, be kind. Choose your words wisely. Be gracious. Listen. Please feel the freedom to share your opinion, but let your words drip with grace and truth. You never know who is sitting next to you.