Who will serve as our president for the next four years? As I write this article, it is still undecided as the vote counts trickle in. Perhaps this will be solved by the time you read this article and a winner will be declared. Most likely if a winner is declared, there will be protests, lawsuits, and more. Who knows how this ends? It is somewhat the perfect nightmare scenario ending to this train wreck of a year 2020.
Are you worried? Are you frustrated or angry? Are you thankful for the outcome at this point? As people of faith, we should be walking through this season with a different set of eyes, and a different tone from the rest of the world. I know that this election season brings out the passion in us as people of faith. This is for good reason as we think of issues such as freedom of religion, abortion, healthcare, equality, immigration, foreign policy, the economy and more. Even Christians view these issues from different lenses at times depending on what may seem most important to them personally and from a biblical standpoint (as well as how it should be addressed). I have often heard during this season that there is a war for the soul of our nation. That does perhaps seem to be true as we have watched the absolute unraveling of society this past year.
Where are we as “the church” in this moment? How should we move forward? In a season of chaos and uncertainty, people need to discover that which is truly certain. Our faith has been shaken in our great nation due to growing division and lack of trust. People no longer trust the media, the government, the health experts, Big Tech, and the list goes on. In the process, I am sure many have lost faith in the church as well. As a people, we have moved from the politically involved to the politically obsessed.
Our move going forward is important. The Church of Jesus Christ should help to be a moral, social, and spiritual conscience to our communities and nation. We are always to stand for “Truth” and righteousness, but must do so with grace. We are called to be bold while walking in humility and love. Jesus said to his followers, “You are the salt of the earth… You are the light of the world… In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:13-16).
I believe in the days to come we may see an increase of hate and anger spewing between political parties. There is every reason to believe this election will end up in the court system. Some of you reading believe that is absolutely unthinkable for that to happen. Others of you reading believe that must happen. Whichever way you fall, the heart for all of us should be that truth prevails at the end of the day, and the true will of the American people who legally and rightfully voted is made clear and plain.
If this season continues to be filled with deep division, the church must be salt and light. We cannot play partisan politics to the point of losing our witness and credibility to the world. Politics becomes adversarial between the opposing parties and those with opposing views. If Jesus had played politics, we would all be damned. Jesus moved toward those who opposed Him, who had rebelled against God. Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called children of God” (Matthew 5:9). Jesus reached to those who were not on the same page as Him. He met them where they were, not where they “should be.” Jesus did not say He would “come to build his government,” but that He would come to build “His CHURCH” and that the gates of hell would not prevail against it. The mission of God’s people is not earthly and political at heart. Our mission is for the heart souls of men and women. We will not win the world around us while spewing sarcasm, anger, bitterness, fear, and resentment. We are called to engage the world armed with the Spirit of Jesus Christ, not the spirit of this world.
We are not called to create registered Democrats or Republicans. I am afraid many have been so focused on scoring political points with our verbal jabs, that we may lose our spiritual and moral clout with the world. May the Lord convict us, and help us to be salt and light – not sour and dull. The world needs a certain Hope, and that is only found in Jesus Chtist. And that’s the Word.