Unity and Grace through Election 2020

Unity and Grace through Election 2020

 Election 2020 is a few hours away.  There is a part of me that feels like the nation is being pulled apart like a rubber band getting close to snapping in two. I do feel this election’s weight, but I chose to place my hope and faith in God. As we approach the election, I wanted to take a few moments to talk about the wrestling in my heart. My goal is not to have you vote the way I do but to encourage Christians to faith, grace, unity, and peace during and after the election.

It’s probably wise for you to know a little about me. I’m a 55-year-old, white, conservative Southern Baptist preacher and, thus, a follower of Jesus Christ.  I lean right in all my politics.  For some, not nearly far enough right, and for others much too far to the right. I try to combine my political stances with grace and mercy for all people. I am unapologetically and unashamedly pro-life. I believe life begins at conception. Therefore, the baby in the mother’s womb is a person and has the right to complete personhood. But my ethic for life extends to the United States border and the nursing home down the street. All people, regardless of race and place on this earth, should be treated with respect, grace, and dignity. 

I believe in biblical marriage.  As designed by God, marriage is between a man and a woman for a lifetime.  I affirm biblical sexuality. God created man and woman, male and female.  I believe in justice and our mandate to care for the poor.  I believe in a well-funded and strong police department.  I am grateful for all the men and women of our police force.  I affirm that black lives matter but cannot affirm the movement #BLM or Antifa.  I think white supremacy is from the pits of hell and must be eradicated in America.  I am a proud American and believe we live in the greatest nation in the world.  I am grateful to all the men and women who have served and are serving in our armed services.  I am pleased the Senate affirmed Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court of the United States. I do not approve of either party stacking the Supreme Court. 

As a Christian, I am a citizen of God’s Kingdom first and an American second. My allegiance is to Jesus Christ as the Sovereign King of the universe. I have chosen to extend grace and compassion to those who think differently than I do.  I can love a gay man and show compassion to an illegal immigrant.  I chose to do those things because God has extended so much grace and mercy to me.

I cannot vote for the Democrat ticket.  My conscience will not allow it.  There are many issues their platform holds to that I cannot support; Marriage, religious freedom, Sanctity of Life, and big government are but a few problems.  But how do I support a candidate I find so lacking morally?  Do I vote third party?  Do I not vote?  What should I do?  These are valid questions, and I know many Christians are struggling with as well.  Please pray.  Do what your conscience will allow.  Allow the Holy Spirit to guide your heart. Examine the Scriptures.  And by all means, vote. This election, like the last, I will vote for the party platform.  Let me also add; we must not judge a person based on how they vote. I have many good Christian friends who love Jesus very much, voting for Biden and possibly a third party.  A person’s vote is not a test of genuine faith.

Even more than my candidate winning, my heart longs to see revival in the church. I agree with Andy Stanley when he writes, “Your candidate will win or lose based on how Amerca votes. But the church wins or loses based on how Christians respond in the days that follow.” Let us respond in Christlike ways in the coming days. 

Therefore, my response will be to pray and seek God’s direction. As best I can, I will vote according to God’s guidance.  I will look and vote according to my conscience and to biblical guidelines.

  • I will act justly, love faithfulness, and will walk humbly before God (Micah 6:8).
  • With humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, I will make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:2-3).
  • I will act wisely toward outsiders and will make the most of the time.  My speech will always be gracious and seasoned with salt. (Colossians 4:5-6).
  • I will consistently live a good life among the pagans (1 Peter 3:12), so I might be light. My light will shine, so my good deeds bring glory to God and good to others (Matthew 5:16).
  • As far as it depends on me, I will live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:18).

On November 4, my hope and faith will remain in God.  I will live as if I believe Jesus is King.  I will not live in fear.  I will not bring shame to God through my words or actions. You don’t have to vote like me but join me in showing grace, peace, and unity to all Americans.  May God bless our great nation.

Election Ideas of 2018

Final ballot box

I’ll be out of pocket on election day, so I thought I’d remind you of a few simple things as election day draws near.  First, I’m not a big political activist.  In fact, I am very disenchanted with both political parties and our political leaders.  There are so many things in my life that hold more eternal importance to me.  However, I know the importance of Christians being involved in this process, praying for God’s wisdom, and voting accordingly.  Nonetheless, I wish most Christians would have the same passion for sharing Jesus with people as they do in sharing their political views.

I’ve never been more discouraged with how I see so many Christians treating politics these days. Too many Christians are responding, with what I feel, is hate and fear.  If I feel this way, how much more would a lost person feel?  If I did not know better, I would think Christians believed our eternal hope is somehow tied to our political systems.

As we approach Tuesday, here are 10 things to simply keep in mind.  (I think you will agree with these  they are simply here to remind us as the Election Day approaches.)

  1. We are citizens of the Kingdom of God first and citizens of America second.
  2. The United States is not the Kingdom of God.
  3. Our loyalty is to King Jesus first and foremost. Our allegiance is never to a political party or a candidate.
  4. Party affiliation is not a test of eternal security.  I have many “liberal” friends who stand securely in the righteousness of Jesus, just like me.
  5. Our hope is in the finished work of Jesus Christ on Calvary not the final ballot box on Tuesday.
  6. “Win or Lose” God will continue to sovereignly reign on His throne. We will never give the impression to a lost world that our hope is somehow tied to a political outcome. God will not be waiting with wringing hands to see the outcome of Tuesday’s election. He already knows.  His man or woman will win on Tuesday.
  7. “Win or Lose” we will never allow our responses to be motivated by fear or hate but always by love and compassion.
  8. Facebook will not be the avenue Christians will use to launder their political thoughts and positions.
  9. We will faithfully pray for whichever candidate wins.
  10. People, illegal or legal, are not political pawns but people God has given us to love and reach with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

On Wednesday, November 7th, our greatest concern, as it is every day, will be to shine brightly for Jesus Christ and represent Him well in a crooked and depraved generation.  I know this is a very hot-button issue.  Go to the polls and vote for whomever God’s leads you to vote. Don’t be afraid if the “other” candidate wins; by all means, don’t let the world think, even for a moment, our eternal hope is tied to the election. One other thing, unless it’s kind and to affirm the winning candidate, don’t say anything on Facebook for a few days. Remember, there will be a lot of scared and hurt people on Wednesday.  Let’s not add to their pain.

Finally, no matter the outcome, BE KIND, CHURCH.

So what do you think?  Let me know your thoughts.