I also know the trap that politics can become as well.
Many thousands of years ago King David wrote this: the Lord is my light and salvation-whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life-of whom shall I be afraid? (Ps.27:1). I cannot help but think of these words as I consider the response from many who are followers of Jesus to the recent election results south of the border. I’ve seen lots of unbridled anger but also the fear that much of that anger is derived from. I know that the winning candidate said many enflaming, controversial and offensive things. I know there are many things in his past that are unsavory. So I get the anger to a degree and also the fear. But for the follower of Jesus we need to look to something higher as we consider our response to the politics of the day and how we treat one another. To be unwilling to dialogue, discuss or be in fellowship with those of an opposing view does nothing to seek peace or perpetuate love. Jesus debated with the Pharisees, how can we do any less?
David knew all about fear and political corruption having served King Saul faithfully but then becoming a hunted fugitive due to the King’s delusional jealousy. Yet in the end as he reminds us he knew where his strength lay. More importantly, he knew where ultimate strength lay- in the Lord. So as we consider the results of the election it’s important to remember that God is still on the throne, he’s not surprised by what’s happening and he’s at work right now in his regular, sometimes mysterious and hard to see ways. But he’s still at work so we should fear not.
That’s for one group.
There’s another group who are gleefully happy for the results. To them I would share Paul’s words to the church at Ephesus: “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.” (Eph.4:2). Theirs was a different type of fear. A fear of the losing candidate who was untrustworthy, had ties to specials interest, big government, big business and was hostile to many of our core values. Her presidency would have ensured more of the same and so many were very afraid of her.
This group is happy because she didn’t win but it’s a good thing to remember when emotions are enflamed to be humble in victory and also show the kind of love that will win those who are angry and afraid. The victorious President-elect is not the second coming and will struggle with many things. Those who are happy with the results need to ensure they are being kind and loving towards their brothers and sisters who are hurting right now. Build bridges, don’t fortify islands.
In the end, while some things may change many things won’t because in the end our sin natures will not change. We are still in a need of a savior and his offer still stands. Let us focus on that and fear not, gloat not, and let our lights shine. So debate, discuss, protest peacefully, be aware and involved in the political process but always remember to pray and run all your thoughts through the filter of the Bible.
I pray for the new President and government in the United States as I encourage you all to do, as I do for our government here that I don’t always agree with (well actually rarely), but pray for them I do because I know in the end the only lasting answers to the problems we have rest in God. So with that in mind I can fear not.