Last month, we visited the World War I Museum in Kansas City. In one of the exhibits, there was a video & show that had a quote saying (excuse me if this is slightly wrong, but I believe it's nearly verbatim), "Peace is war held under control."
With all of the election chaos in our country lately, this may seem to be true. Last night, I found myself thinking of possible, horrible outcomes - regardless of who won. There doesn't seem to be a good option. I could sit here & try to persuade you of who I think the better option is, but if you're reading this, you likely already know who you're voting for. If my opinion matched yours, you could feel reaffirmed, & I could validate some of your reasons for voting for that person. If my opinion disagreed with yours, it wouldn't change your mind about casting your vote. Best case scenario, we'd both vote our convictions & move along. Worst case, it might change your opinion of me & my morals/beliefs/politics. It might cause an argument that wouldn't lead to either of us changing sides. It could lead to hurt feelings or a changed relationship. All because of fighting over two people who - in all likelihood - neither of us really like, but each of us are choosing to support because we agree with one a little more.
There will be upset & hurt feelings after this election is over. No matter the outcome, people will be outraged.
In the midst of the madness, there can be peace. & I don't just mean "war held under control."
Philippians 4:6-7 says, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer & supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. & the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts & your minds in Christ Jesus."
I sincerely hope all of you have been praying for guidance in how best to vote in this election. There are so many issues at stake - Please do not vote based on a single issue. Education, refugees, abortion, equality for minorities & women, immigration, who best will represent our country in foreign & domestic situations, who will appoint the best Supreme Court judges, etc, etc... There is likely not one candidate who agrees with you on every issue, but I hope you have prayerfully considered who best represents your beliefs on the majority.
Prayer will help grant you guidance & peace. After that, all you can do is give it to God. Do not throw insults at others who voted on the opposite side. Do not let your friendships, family, or church be divided by politics. Do not lean into worry & anxiety.
In this world, we will have war. & God is in control. In that sense, the above quote is true. In election times, people like to quote Romans 13:1-2, which says, "Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, & those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, & those who resist will incur judgment."
I don't read Relevant Magazine, but I recently found this article, & pieces of it are important to remember in this moment.
"Simply because something occurs under God’s providence does not mean that He approves of it or desires that it happens. For example, Scripture tells us that we are all sinners, but we know that God neither approves of our sin, nor does He desire for us to continue sinning... Fast forward to today. Is God sovereign? Yes. Do we have choices in the course of human events? Yes. Are we held responsible for the choices we make? Yes. Does God’s sovereignty give us license to make poor decisions? No it does not... So as election 2016 proceeds, take comfort in knowing that God stands in control amidst all this chaos. But remember, we are called not merely to rest in His control, but to actively display His character in the choices we make. Leaders may rise under His providence, but as long as we choose them, we will be held accountable for whether they meet with His approval." (Read the full article here.)
We have a responsibility to vote our beliefs. This does not mean that the most God-fearing, Biblical Christian will win, or even run for office. This also does not mean, though, that we get to be hateful & disrespectful when our candidate does not win - or when they do. Think about how you are representing Christ, win or lose. If you are voting for someone because of your Christ-like convictions, then stand by those Christ-like convictions throughout the voting process, & the term of the winner, whether you voted for them or not. God is still in control, even if our president is not following Him.
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