A quick note: I had a medical procedure today, and I really thought I had finished this and posted it much earlier! The medical procedure came out perfectly. The devotional, as usual, is here warts and all.
During election season, it’s easy to get caught up in the politics of who will run our country. We see many who tell us that we should vote for Candidate A because that’s the Christian choice; while others tell us that the only person a Christian can vote for is Candidate B. Usually we have this argument because each candidate hits different hot button issues that appeal to our beliefs. It is important to remember that all candidates are fallible and that God is not going to zap you for voting for someone different from your neighbor. There may be consequences to society because of your vote, but if you think about it, one way or another there are always consequences to our votes.
So what’s a person who follows Christ to do, especially when they don’t see any candidate that they can support? We must remember our calling. It doesn’t matter who wins this election; as Christians we are still to share the gospel and take care of social needs. Paul made it clear to Timothy what the job of a Christian was while living in society. “Join with me in suffering, like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets entangled in civilian affairs, but rather tries to please his commanding officer.” (2 Timothy 2:3-4)
We are called to suffering. That means we should be suffering because we are doing what’s right in a world that has gone wrong. If we truly follow Christ and show that in our lives, we will run into opposition and suffering. In times past, people chastised Christians for going to church on Sunday and then not letting their beliefs affect their lives the rest of the week. Now Christians run into opposition for trying to live according to their faith each and every day. People want Christians to confine their beliefs and practices to the Church building. We are called to be the body of Christ in a hurting world. We are to feed the hungry and share the gospel. We are to visit those in prison and share the gospel. We are to hold our leaders accountable before God and share the gospel. We aren’t called to run the world; we are called to please our commanding officer by loving others, extending God’s grace, and sharing the gospel.
It is easy to look at the political scene and get depressed if you, as a Christian, wants to vote for someone that upholds your Christian values. There may come a time when we will find a person who fully represents our Christian values, but it is not this year. (Yes, that was a deliberate theft from “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King.”) As soldiers of Christ, we are reminded not to get so wrapped up in the affairs of this world that we make an election more important than our main job: sharing the gospel. Perhaps one candidate will make it harder than the other; that’s happened before. They aren’t wrapping us in pitch and using us as torches to light the garden. They aren’t throwing us to the lions. We can focus on our main task which is pleasing our commanding officer, God, and living for Him in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation. And, oh yes, share the gospel.
Oh Lord, I’d love to know who You would vote for. Since I don’t, remind me that I am to continue to pray for our president and other government leaders. Remind me to pray for all the candidates, especially the presidential ones, as they campaign. Use whoever is elected as president to draw us back to You so that we can be Your people in the midst of a hostile world.