November 1, 2010
We should be used to it; they are the signs of the season. Football – at all levels – fills the weekends. We gain an hour’s sleep next Saturday night… and then we’ll curse the darkness on the way home from work. Strange creatures came around, looking for a handout while we asked ourselves, “Who do they think they are?” They don’t scare us, because we knew they were coming.
Trick-or-treaters on Halloween? Nope; I’m talking about candidates, getting ready for Election Day! The “what do you want to be when you grow up?” question has turned ugly. Mothers won’t admit that their baby grew up to be in Congress…
The fact that politics is not a popular profession doesn’t mean that we can live without them! Even so, the projections for Tuesday are sobering: the people who may set the course for the future are the ones who fail to turn out and vote…
The demands of work and carpools and Raymond reruns and poker nights will compete with the biannual act of democracy – the five minutes in the voting booth – and, too often, lethargy will win. Distractions will claim too many voters; the candidates – incumbents and challengers – will split the pie based on the slice that showed up to mark their ballots.
Does government affect and influence the culture? You bet it does. But, does culture affect and influence the government? Unquestionably. Where does one get into that rotation? In the voting booth! Have you found yourself grousing about government? Do you ever curse the culture? Save your breath, if you stay home on Tuesday. The biggest thing you can do to effect change – humanly – is to vote.
Now, listen, I said humanly. It’s still the Christian’s #1 job to pray about the state of things. The verse still stands: “If my people – who are called by My name – will humble themselves and pray, and seek my face, then will I hear from heaven, will forgive their sin and heal their land. (I Chronicles 7:14) Our first – and, most powerful – strategy is executed on our knees, in a closet. That is the starting point… but it leads to the place where we’re on our feet, in a booth. How do you take the impact from the closet into the booth? What should a Christian do about voting?
You became a Christian by casting a vote. You didn’t know Jesus personally before you voted for Him as Lord and Savior. You probably heard some of the sound bites from His campaign – things like, “Unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.” And, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life; no man comes unto the Father, except through Me.” You voted “yes” to Jesus, and surrendered to Him in the voting booth of your heart.
Now, how does a Christian cast votes for government? Let’s face it: you don’t know the candidates – personally – any more than you knew Jesus personally, before you elected him to be your personal Savior.
He returned to heaven and left us here to influence the culture. We’re running against the god of this world – Satan, Lucifer, the devil, whatever you want to call him – in our competition for the votes of the people who have yet to elect Jesus to be their Lord and Savior. How will we use our opportunity on Tuesday to advance Jesus’ redemptive agenda?
Here’s a challenging but powerful two-step process:
1. Show up to vote; and,
2. Select the candidates whose positions best reflect a biblical worldview.
To do that, you have to understand something of God’s platform – which He laid out succinctly in His voter’s guide, “the Bible” – and the platform of the candidates. Have you done your homework?
What would Jesus do? He’d vote for the candidates who reflect His views… and He plans to do that through you! Be careful!