The election for the new president of the United States is rapidly approaching. During the primary process, I witnessed many Christians struggling to know who they should vote for. While many Christians have used party platform to guide them in the past, there is something different about this election.
You know what?
Both nominees of the two major parties have some significant character flaws. These flaws have brought confusion to Christians who normally would vote by party platform. Many Christians have decided to not vote because they don’t like either candidate.
I have also struggled to know exactly what I should do. Let me share with you what I have decided after much prayer and contemplation.
If our founding fathers were able to climb into a time machine and travel to the present day and we sat down with them to discuss this, what would we hear?
I don’t believe that our founders would consider a “no” vote an option. I believe that they see voting as a privilege and a right secured by much sacrifice. I believe they would say that voting is part of the democratic process and that the worst thing we could do is to turn that process over to a small representation of the country. I believe that they would encourage us to continue to work for change – to refuse to give up on democracy. Giving up our voice would equal giving up our power to individuals with personal agendas. I believe that they would tell us that whatever we do, don’t give up on democracy!
After this conversation, I decide to vote.
But that doesn’t alter my dilemma. I don’t like either candidate. So who do I vote for?
Here’s what I’ve decided to do.
When I cast my vote on November 8th, I am not voting for who will pastor my church or who will be my spiritual leader. It would be wonderful if our choices included people who were of high character and steady morality. But the job of the President does not include teaching me how to live a more moral life. Morality is relative to the individual. In recent years, we have observed the actions of leaders who believe they have a higher moral understanding of life.
Following the Constitution when it was congruent with a leader’s values and circumventing it when it did not.There are processes in place (if we use them!) to take care of corruption in government. We must ensure that these processes are followed by our leaders so that moral human weakness does not take advantage of the people.
Through our right to vote, we hold these leaders accountable for their actions. Remember, in a true democracy, the power ultimately lies with the people. We cannot abdicate that power to a few. The fewer people involved in the democratic process, the easier for it to be manipulated by selfish demagogues.
Back to November 8th.
I’m not looking to a President to change the hearts of the American people. That is a job way beyond his/her control. When I vote that day, I must vote for the individual that I believe will best defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies – foreign and domestic. This is the oath the President elect will take because it is their primary job. I don’t want a President who will change the Constitution. I want a President who will protect and defend it! So, this principle is what will guide my vote on November 8th.
The President of this nation should be someone you have confidence in. But remember, candidates are people – not God. They are limited in their power and should be! I am not looking to them to bring revival or awakening to America. I am looking to them to protect and defend the foundation of our freedom from enemies who intend to destroy it. I intend to hold them accountable for how they do their job.
Christians, you need to vote! If not, you give up your voice in this great democracy to someone who may or may not represent your interests. Your vote lets those elected know that you intend to be involved and that you are going to be watching to see they fulfill their mandates. Failure to vote is a vote! So, use that vote wisely, but “use” it! If you cannot vote for a person, vote for a platform that most closely represents the principles of the Bible. While the candidate may not be so interested in the platform, there are others in their party who are and they will press them to uphold the platform. If they do not uphold it, support for their ideas and reelection fade.
I believe the founders would say, “vote!” I will vote for the one who will defend our freedoms and our nation against enemies who intend to destroy it. I will look for a platform that most closely represents the principles I hold dear and vote for it.
And beyond all this, I will pray and believe in God’s ability to use even a “jackass” to further His plan. It has happened before, it can happen again (Numbers 22:30). (My reference here doesn’t indicate the party I’m voting for!)
See you at the poll! God, I trust in You!