Reflections on the Election: Christians’ Responsibilities Going Forward
Up until now, I have very intentionally avoided commenting on current events for the most part. My heart for Our Faith Applied has been to encourage and equip, rather than add to the myriad of opinions on current events that are already out there, positive or negative. However, with the aftermath of this week’s historic election, I do feel the need to share some thoughts. I will not discuss my own personal feelings about Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, as I feel strongly it is a misuse of a ministry platform to stand on one’s own soapboxes about issues. Rather, I want to share some of my heart on what I feel our behavior as Christians should be going forward. Following the election I have seen (primarily on social media) individuals who are followers of Christ behaving in hateful ways. I’ve seen Trump supporters gloating and throwing Clinton’s loss in others’ faces, and I’ve seen Clinton supporters call Trump and his supporters horrendous names. The arrogance and hate is coming from both sides. It’s clear the enemy is enjoying stirring the pot and many of God’s people are not managing their emotions about this election in a Christ-like way. Life is always going to involve both victories and disappointments, and as representatives of God we must remember a few things as we deal with either one:
1) Simply put, there is a healthy, respectful way to deal with our feelings, and it does not involve dumping them on social media. If you are thrilled about the outcome of this election, then by all means, feel happy about it, celebrate with like-minded individuals, but don’t gloat. Gloating is arrogance and arrogance is a type of pride. God hates pride, He’s very clear about that. If you are upset about the outcome of this election, take time to grieve, but don’t attack those who didn’t vote like you. More importantly, don’t allow bitterness to take root during this time. Arrogance and bitterness will only increase division, and division is clearly the enemy’s tactic in the body of Christ right now. In short, deal with your feelings in a private, respectful way. Stay OFF of social media, respect others who feel differently than you and above all, take your feelings to God.
2) For those that are concerned about where are country is headed under Trump’s leadership, I feel very strongly about this: do not let fear take root! As Christians, our words have power, and that means this is not a time to be speaking negative things about this country. This is not the time to be saying “we’re all doomed”, but rather to stand in faith and declare that in ALL things and ALL circumstances “God is in control!” Never once, in all of recorded history, has God EVER given up his authority. He is over all things. We must trust in that. God is bigger than whomever is in office, and as His hands and feet, we need to be examples of His love, power and generosity. We may have little control over what happens in Washington D.C., but we can spread love to the world around us, and the impact of that is not something to minimize. Let’s shine God’s light instead of spreading fear and bitterness.
3) Regardless of where you stand on this election, I feel very strongly that in the next two months we need to be praying in very specific ways for Donald Trump. He is surrounded by pastors now, which is something new for him I have to assume. We need to pray that God gives them wisdom and discernment as they speak into Mr. Trump’s life and that they would have favor with him, so that as God speaks through them, Mr. Trump can receive it. We need to pray that in the next two months, Mr. Trump would have some very personal and powerful encounters with the Lord and that his heart would become moldable under God’s influence. He has strengths and gifts like everyone else; let us pray that as he encounters more of God, God will be able to harness and direct those gifts in an effective way. Let us pray that God will show him how to bring unity where his words have caused division, and give him wisdom to discern the Lord’s direction as he leads our country. No matter who leads our country, we need to pray for them to have a moldable heart that can be shaped by God, and trust that His grace is sufficient to cover that person’s mistakes.
Children of God, let’s remain in faith instead of living in fear, or having an arrogant “we’ll show all you liberals” kind of attitude. Neither one glorifies God or unifies His people. There is a great spiritual war occurring over this nation right now, and it is our time to step up and pray in faith, spread love and give hope. We will never agree on everything, but let us treat each other with love and respect regardless of our differences. Let us respond to our victories and disappointments in a way that honors God and each other. Let us believe God for BIG things! He is more than able if we will unify, pray, and stand in faith!
But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” And he reassured them and spoke kindly to them. –Genesis 50:19-21
Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. –2 Timothy 2:23,24
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.–1 Timothy 1:1-4