Vote for This Candidate or The Country Dies

One of the quickest ways I know to start feeling depressed about the state of current events is to watch the news. I think there actually might be something to the phrase, “Ignorance is bliss.” When it comes to politics, it can be easy to get caught up in the feeling that everything is going to fall apart if we don’t elect the right person. Well, the sad truth is it doesn’t matter who we elect.
Or is that the happy truth?
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In America, the elected government officials are a reflection of the society as a whole. If we have someone in office because they approve of big government, abortion, or they are just simply good-looking, then they are in office because those are the things that the voters of America care about. Getting someone else elected won’t change that, or at least not very much, and not for very long.
If the state of the country is going to change, it’s going to have to change person-by-person: bottom up, not top down.

Sure, politics is still important, and we need Christians voting for the right people…but what do you do when there is no right person to vote for? It seems that voting for the Christian today is a process of deciding which evil is lesser. That can be rather discouraging.
What I find encouraging is that, while important, politics isn’t the root of the problem. The sorry state of our country’s morality isn’t really the result of who got voted in, but who voted for them. Us. We; individual persons. If we are to change the country for good, we must begin at the foundational inter-personal level of everyday life. Impacting others for good, raising godly children, and teaching others the truth are the things that will start to make a difference for good. Treating the cause, not the symptoms.

What I find even more encouraging is that, while we definitely have a responsibility, it’s ultimately not up to us to change or influence people either. We don’t have to fret or stress over whether or not we are changing people. God is the one in control, and He is the only one—ultimately—who can bring about meaningful life transformation. It’s not up to us to save people, or to make sure they vote for the right people. God calls us to participate in His work, but it is still His work. God is the one reconciling the Earth, not us. We are to be His tools; His means.
While it may be hard to see our country going down a road we don’t want it to go, we also have to remember that this isn’t actually our home. America, or whatever Earthly country you live in, is not your permanent residence. You’re just visiting. Just passing through. Our permanent home lies in the kingdom of heaven.
While on Earth, we are called to help bring this kingdom to Earth, and to help bring the Earth into this kingdom, but this work will not be complete until the return of Jesus.
I think it’s important to keep this big picture in mind, or else it can be easy to get depressed over the state of the world and forget that everything is actually okay.
At the same time, let us not adopt the Oh-Jesus-come-soon-and-take-me-away-from-this-place perspective that everything is just going to keep getting worse and worse and there’s nothing we can do about it. I don’t know about you, but that kind of life would fill me with angst, and a lot of good things in life would seem pointless.
This kind of mentality is very defeatist in my opinion, and takes a rather hands-off approach to the culture. Why try to change anything for the better if everything is just going to keep getting worse anyway?
As Christians, we are called to make disciples (not save souls) and to teach others all that Christ commanded us. We are called to do this as we go through our daily lives. We have a part to play, if we want to. It is a benefit for us to participate in the good work that God is doing, but He will not force us to participate if we don’t want to, and neither will God be left short-handed without us. It is a privilege that we are allowed to join in the good work that God is doing, and we should join in.
However, we must be careful not to get confused and start believing it is our work, or that it is up to us to change things for the better. It’s not up to us, and that’s a very good thing.
If politics fascinates you, that’s great. Should Christians vote intelligently for the best candidates? Yes. But we must also not gain our sense of security (or lack thereof) through a man-made system of governance.

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2 Comments

  1. Thanks for your perspective Reagan, the news IS depressing! It's tough when you have to vote for the lesser of two evils, knowing the candidates likely have their own, not their country's, interests at heart. It's hard seeing the lack of solid, influential leadership in our government. It's even harder however, to see lack of morality among our citizens. It's the people who make a country, and we are the ones raising the government of tomorrow. I agree with what you said, “Treating the cause, not the symptoms” is the only way effect a real cure for what ails America. At the same time I like how you pointed out that God is in control, and that we shouldn't worry. (That's easy to forget:)

  2. Right, no matter what our circumstances, or what is happening, everything is still okay, because God lives and reigns.