Is it just me or are you tired of all the political ads, robotic phone calls and social media posts bashing the two candidates? With all the mud slinging, name- calling and character bashing the two main candidates have stooped to over the past year, I need a serious detoxification from all my eyes and ears have witnessed. By this point, you have more than likely decided on whom you are voting for, and perhaps you have even voted early. So what should you do while you are waiting for November 8th to come around?
As leaders, we are obligated to lead our congregations on the path of righteousness, and that includes guiding people’s choices before they pull the voter curtain behind them on November 8th. If you feel you have guided people in a way in which they can morally and biblically vote for a particular candidate, then you have done your job. The next part is equally as important: respect others’ right to vote, too. Even though a person’s vote may be different than yours, don’t strive to lose a friendship, sever family ties or drive your congregation out the door over it. This is just one election and one time in history. God, who knows no space or time, knows the future.
Although many people will be disappointed by the election results, here’s the good news:
God still reigns.
In a world where there will be great presidents and not so good ones, ones that follow God with their actions, while others are Christians in name only, we know one ruler who is always good, and will always act in accordance with that goodness. Author Lucinda Secrest McDowell says, “2016 is certainly not the first time a culture has discovered that we will reap what we have sown – thus being presented with choices for a leader that mirror the qualities too many have extolled as important to fame and power…And yet, here we are thousands of years later, still digging wells that can hold no water. I guess the question becomes for each individual – will I trust God and build my life around His will and His way?”1
So what do you do when your friends and family on social media are still throwing punches and throwing their hats into the political ring? Here are some tips to surviving the remaining days before the election:
Trust in the Word– Even when things seem bleak and our world seems out of control, in reality it isn’t. God still sits on the throne. It’s easy to forget the wise words of Scripture when it seems the world is in chaos. Trust the words from Ecclesiastes 7:19: “Wisdom gives strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city,” or Proverbs 21:1 that says, “The Lord can control a king’s mind as he controls a river; he can direct it as he pleases.” Let’s not forget the words in 1 Timothy 2:1-3, “First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity. This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior.”
Trust Yourself- Don’t listen to every stranger that gives their political opinions. On November 8th, it will just be you and God when you push that lever. Regardless of whether you chose to vote for one of the candidates of the two main parties or go rogue and vote for a third party candidate, you are exercising a right that soldiers have given their lives for you to exercise. As long as you are satisfied with your vote, don’t worry about what others think. Our goal is still to please God and not men.
Don’t Trust Social Media- The Bible says, “Do not fear” over 365 times, one for every day of the year. God’s got this covered, despite what social media would have you believed. The world will still spin and life will still go on on November 9th. Being constantly bombarded by negativity will negatively impact your thoughts and feelings about yourself, others and the world around you. Take a Facebook fast for the next few weeks until after the election. It will give your mind time to recalibrate itself, and you’ll be surprised at how clear- headed and at peace you are from doing so.
You may not be able to fix all of the world’s problems with one vote. But you can always vote your conscience. A vote you cast on a candidate you believe in is never a wasted vote. But by listening to so many other opinions on the subject the choice can get muddy. Get off social media and get into the Word and not only will you strengthen your faith but you may also restore your sanity.
Michelle S. Lazurek is an award-winning author, speaker, pastor’s wife and mother. She has been published over one hundred times in places such as Charisma Magazine, crosswalk.com and Christianity Today’s website Gifted For Leadership. She also teaches writers’ workshops for various places such as the Montrose Christian Writers conference. Hr newest book, An Invitation to the Table explores the biblical concept of hospitality. For more info, please visit her website at www.michellelazurek.com