From the way we have been behaving lately, and the way we use ALL CAPS in our social media comments, it appears that perhaps we have allowed elections to undermine the promises of God in our lives. Are we anxious and restless? Have we have lost the way to green pastures and quiet water? It sure looks like it.
Maybe you are leaning on God, and trusting His Word on Election Day but what about the day after election day? Will you still trust the promises of God if your candidate loses? If we think we can’t trust the promises of God, we believe we must take things into our own hands.
What does that look like? Oh my, it looks exactly like where we are right now, and where we’ve been for a couple of years: there are no political conversations, only arguments and fights. The waters rage, the battle lines are drawn and our dukes are always up.
Why is that? I think it’s because we’ve forgotten God is in control. When we don’t trust God’s promise that he rules over the kingdoms of the world and gives them to anyone he chooses (Daniel 4:25), we panic if things don’t go as we hope.
Even though God allows us free will to choose our candidates and our nation affords us the freedom to vote, somehow in God’s amazing sovereignty, wisdom, and foreknowledge, he is fully in control of the outcome to accomplish his perfect plan. As we trust God’s promise, we more readily accept the results of elections.
Our words and actions (unfriending life-long friends, berating family members, and arguing with total strangers) reveal that we are not trusting God’s promises.
Are we even listening to God? When we don’t take time to listen to God — to communicate with him — we cannot expect to communicate with anyone else very well.
When we feel the need to control conversations and outcomes, we set ourselves up as little gods and then wickedness rises to the top. We overflow with anger, mistrust, misinformation, polarized points of view, and hate. Yes, hate seems to be motivating a lot of people lately.
God has a promise about hate also: if anyone claims, “I am living in light,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is still living in darkness (1 John 1:9-11). That’s a frightening promise — to be living in darkness — but it’s a promise nonetheless. If we call ourselves Christians and we hate our brothers, because they disagree with our politics, we are living in darkness. Seriously. That’s what the Bible says.
OK, we aren’t perfect, we sin, but if we are not vigorously working to overcome hate, are we truly God’s children? Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him (1John 3:15). Do you hate Christians who are on the opposite side of the political spectrum from you? How do you, Christian, justify that?
There is no room for hate in the Christian heart when God dwells on its throne. We may not like what people do, or their policies, but we certainly cannot hate the person. We must fight for our beliefs, but not at the expense of relationships. If we trust the promises of God, then we won’t hate our opponents. We won’t fear our candidate losing, the other party in power, or that things are spiraling out of control.
We destroy relationships when we think it is up to us to change another person’s mind. We cannot do that. However, God promises us that minds are changed, renewed, as we stop confirming to the pattern of the world (Romans 12:2). Perhaps when we abstain from the pattern of hateful arguments, and allow God to transform us, we will make more of a difference in the lives of others, and their thinking might change. What is more likely to change your mind: Someone yelling at you in ALL CAPS, or someone who lives and speaks in love?
Maybe the greatest Election Day fear is that people will be elected to positions of authority who might make our lives more difficult. Perhaps “more difficult” is what God wants for us. God promises us that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame (Romans 5:3-5).
When we trust the promises of God we can graciously accept whatever the outcome of Election Day. We won’t wake up the day after Election Day angry and hateful, or fearful and vengeful, or depressed and hopeless. We will wake up celebrating that God is Sovereign, and our vote was used for his good purpose.
Whatever the outcome of this election, the King before whom we bow, and to whom we submit in grateful service still sits on his throne worthy of worship and praise.
We don’t have to worry about who sits in a political chair, because they, too, must bow before this King. God promises us that governing authorities that exist are established by God and are God’s servants (Romans 13:1-7). As God’s servants, elected by us, whether we voted for them or not, they will be used by God to accomplish God’s plan both for our good, and as agents of God’s judgment.
God’s ways are higher than our ways, his thoughts are higher than our thoughts, he already knows the outcome of all things, and I believe he uses political situations to drive us to our knees; after all, it is on our knees where we submit to and worship the Almighty King.
Are you worshiping the King with your vote? Will you continue to worship the King on the day after Election Day? Will you trust his promises? Will you rest in his sovereignty?
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