So it’s Sunday and my news feed and social media columns are still blowing up with posts about the election. Being the prune that I am, I’ve tailored what appears on my feed to show only posts from close friends and family. The vast majority of these people are Christians and by the choices they make and the lives they live I have no reason to second guess the label. However, this week’s political upset has sent a fissure between my online community. How is it that people who claim to know and love God are so divided over the election? Here’s some of the stuff I’m reading. I’ll paraphrase because without doubt I’m sure you’ve heard similar stuff too.
- I don’t know how any christian could vote for Trump/Hillary.
- I don’t know how a Christian could vote for someone who supports abortion.
- I don’t know how a Christian could vote for someone who doesn’t care about the poor and unfortunate.
- How could a Christian support a misogynist?
- Christians shouldn’t give into fear and Trump
- How could a sincere Christian ignore all of the immoral liberties Hillary supports?
It’s simple people, Jesus wasn’t on the ballot. (Though I guess we could have done a write-in) The problem I’m seeing right now, the problem I hope to thoroughly address is that Christians are letting the election divide them when in reality, through Christ’s love, we can allow it to unify us.
The question’s and statements I listed above don’t address anything. What we have to remember as believers is that there two things Christ uses to guide us. His Word and our convictions through the Holy Spirit. These two will never contradict the other. What I have learned under the tutelage of older and wiser people (many who vote differently than I) is that they tend to vote blue or red depending on their burdens. As it turns out many people who work with the poor and unfortunate tend to vote democratic while the most generous people I know tend to vote Republican. People who are burdened with defending scripture’s stance on volatile issues such as sexual orientation and abortion lean red and those who live their lives working to serve the ‘lesser of these’ tend to vote blue. This isn’t a profile I’m trying to establish, of course there are exceptions here, but my point is we vote based on our convictions and ministries. For many Christians who voted for Trump, they couldn’t get past the amoral issues within the liberal agenda. There are Christians who voted for Hillary who believe the democratic party has the best solutions for meetings the needs of the poor and unfortunate. Again, the reasons behind every vote are complex and it’s impossible to divide Christians into clean categories to explain why they voted for their candidate. My point here is to illustrate that we vote by our convictions and what baffles me is that any other day we support each other in our convictions and our related ministries, but on election day we allow our convictions to divide us.
As far as I’m concerned it’s time for the Christian community to stop mourning Hillary’s loss and stop celebrating Trump’s victory because neither of these people have the capacity to save our country and meet its needs. The only person capable of healing our land wasn’t on the ballot. God wants us to get to work, follow our convictions and burdens and trust Him for all the rest. Stop the fighting and hateful comments that are polluting all of the forums and posts. This isn’t time to argue or lose heart, it’s a time to get to work because there are problems BOTH parties need to address. The best way to start is to love God and then love our neighbors which include all citizens of our great and ridiculously blessed nation. Love everyone; the wealthy elite, the frightened minorities, poor, widows and the infirm.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.