I don’t get a lot of phone calls from “real” people. Most calls are either scammers or organizations asking for money. This past week it was the Republican National Committee. I was patient. I listened to the spiel, but even though I am a registered Republican, something in their appeal was striking a dissonant chord. It’s the same chord that made me feel ill at ease throughout the last few weeks of the election process.
After the elections, I lost count of how many outlandish stories I heard about how Trump had something up his sleeve and would be staying in office when all was said and done… people, desperate for something different than what life had dished out.
And when it really was said and done, and the Inauguration was finished, I was so saddened by the lack of hope I saw in friends who were suffering disappointment because, if we’re honest, many of us were disillusioned. I think there was truth to Biden’s campaign slogan that it was a battle for the soul of the nation. Satan is certainly vying for it, but it’s not one candidate who is going to be a savior; And yet, many acted as though it was.
Did we erect idols? Looking to one man or one party to meet our needs and desires? Touting that if the wrong candidate went to the White House, this nation would never be the same?
I feel like we did, and that it will not be a battle at the top of the power pyramid that will determine the fate of our country, but the people at the bottom whose choices will make a difference. That’s what I told the woman from the Republican National Committee when she finally stopped telling me that my donation would enable them to turn the political tides. The Jews looked to Jesus to rescue them from the Romans when he walked the roads of Israel, but Jesus was never about turning the tide of political waves, even though He holds them all in His hands. He was about healing the hearts of people, one precious individual at a time. How much is that worth?
“I feel like people need to start putting God first, and then we will see this nation turn around,” I told the woman on the other end of the phone.
Her response: “Oh, the Republican party always puts God first!” she exclaimed.
“Really.” I mused.
“Yes,” she confirmed.
“Is that in writing?” I asked, “Because I’d really like to see that.”
“Well, no,” she conceded, “but the Republican party always puts God first.”
I paused. “Well, I will vote for the candidate who best represents God’s standards,” I told her, “but I’m not making a donation today.”
Today, I think my donation will make a greater impact in ministry. Political parties are made up of people who sometimes do and sometimes don’t put God first, but if I look to these men and women for the answers to all of the world’s woes, I am not putting God first. Are we responsible to be involved in the politics of our nations? I think we are. Scripture says to pray for our leaders. We should care about the morals of those who make our laws and run our courts. But, maybe if we invested more in building God’s kingdom than in building up a political party… that would be big.
In his book, Awakening Pure Worship, Jeff Deyo says this,
There are much greater reasons to be afraid if we are intent on looking solely to human leaders, military powers, or political parties to protect us rather than to God. The One who created those in power. If we are found daily living in His presence, we simply need not be afraid. Think of it. The greatest of the world’s leaders–combined–truly have nothing to offer us in and of themselves. Nothing outside of what God has given them. Whatever strength they have is only that which has emanated from the source–the Source. And their strength is but a fraction of His own.”
God is the Source. It changes our perspective, doesn’t it? Supporting candidates isn’t wrong, but our heart posture needs to be right.
They say we are living in the post-Christian era. What if we were to keep the first things first?
How many hearts would turn toward God?
How many agendas would receive a makeover?
So then, forsake your worries! Why would you say, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear? For that is what the unbelievers chase after. Doesn’t your heavenly Father already know the things your bodies require? “So above all, constantly seek God’s kingdom and his righteousness, then all these less important things will be given to you abundantly. Refuse to worry about tomorrow, but deal with each challenge that comes your way, one day at a time. Tomorrow will take care of itself.”
Matthew 6:31-34 The Passion Translation