On the Eve of The Election
If you're like me, today feels a little surreal...like, we all woke up in one reality but will go to bed in another. And it's not a matter of "if", it's a matter of fact. So we wake up and watch, and wait.
Really, it's an extraordinary experience. When leaders will be chosen, changed, empowered, installed.
Many in history have experienced such days as well, but those typically included swords, moats, trebuchets, and battle-axes, or Molotov cocktails thrown at government buildings.
To witness and participate in outcomes with local and global repercussions, and do it in a (relatively) peaceful and (relatively) ordered fashion is still a privilege we moderns won't fully grasp unless we read a lot of history and have vivid imaginations. And we should read a lot of history and cultivate vivid imaginations.
Which is why voting is always a big thing in our house. Lots of opportunity to talk history, choices, and consequences. We leave the voter pamphlet out for the kids to read and then gather at the dining room table to work through the candidates and issues on the ballot.
Admittedly, as our kids get older, our parenting strategy is adjusting for the rational minds coming to age around our dining room table. By that I mean we don't want to tell our kids what to think, tempting as this might be, so much as we want to teach our kids how to think.
Logically. Soundly. Biblically.
It's the old give-a-fish verses teach-a-man-to-fish adage.
"Dad, I read his argument and it was just full of ad hominems." Good catch son, tell me more.
"Dad, she wasn't persuasive at all. Anyone can run someone else down. It's easy to be a critic, it takes vision and creativity to lead." Great point daughter, what makes you say that?
"Dad, why can they raise our taxes but not put it to a vote of the people, then ask our opinion with an advisory vote while stating very clearly that they won't listen to it?" Great question son. Let me call Daniel Appel and I'll get back to you...
And on it goes. Questions get asked. A lesson from history they've been learning comes up. Dot gets connected. We talk, they learn, I learn, we marvel together, gratefulness grows.
What an incredible experiment, these United States of America.
So as I drove to drop off our ballots this morning, I wasn't anxious, I wasn't nervous, I wasn't angry, I was thankful.
Not in a sentimental way, but in a deeply profound way, realizing again how blessed we are to live in this nation. Even when it appears that it's all going to the dogs.
And speaking of that, who says it has to go to the dogs? Not if I have anything to do with it. Not if you have anything to do with it. Not if we together have anything to do with it.
I say this is a great time to be alive. I say it is a privilege to live in such uncertain & wild times. Thank God we won't be bored. The Church has never been more needed, more relevant, more essential. I predict a bull-market for the business we're in as a church family for years to come (that is, the business of loving people).
And so I find myself invigorated on this day, not with Pollyanna optimism, but with gospel enthusiasm for the mission of the church. God help us and give us strength.
Make no mistake, there are big things on the ballet. I get it. This is a pivotal moment in our nation's story. As I read men and women much smarter than I, the universal voice is "watershed." Never before has two major party candidates vision for America been so different.
Which is why I'm so glad God's vision for His Kingdom hasn't changed. It's a gloriously stabilizing thing to be actively engaged as a faithful, thinking, responsible citizen of this nation, whose eternal citizenship is in Heaven.
So use your head, read widely, and act courageously. Study the positions, platforms, and policies of candidates, overlay them with the Christian worldview (rooted in God's moral law, proven to bring about human flourishing), and vote your conscience. Pray for our nation. Pray for her leaders. Pray for our local officials. Watch the polls. Pay attention to the world around you. Be involved. Be engaged. Run for office. Run a business. Resolve again today to love well every person you meet today.
And wake up tomorrow with hope.
No matter the outcome, Jesus and His Kingdom are polling strong. I predict Him to win by a country mile. Landslide victory. It's a sure Ticket.
Isn't it good to be on team Jesus?
This is truly a great day to be alive, in the middle of great days to be the Church.
I love you Grace City. Let's watch the news tonight, let's look to Jesus tomorrow, and let's wake up ready to go to work. God's Kingdom is on the move.