On March 23, 2015, Ted Cruz became the first major candidate to declare for the 2016 Presidential race. On November 8, Election Day, 595 days later, this election cycle will end. I don’t know about you, no matter who is elected, part of my reaction will be relief that it is over.
Wednesday morning, November 9th, we will wake up with a new leader for our country. Jesus followers will wake up with the same King of Kings and Lord of Lords as their ultimate leader. So what will we need to do on November 9th?
- We need to pray for our new President, that he or she will be wise and humble. We need to pray God will speak directly to her or him about the size of the task ahead of them. We need to ask God to direct his or her paths and remind him or her not to lean on their own understanding.
- We need to pray for the candidate that loses. As Jesus followers, we need to care for their souls. Pray they will sense the presence of God in their loss, and that this loss will cause them to seek Jesus. Pray they will gracious in defeat and be given words from the Holy Spirit that will unite, not divide.
- We need to pray for the healing of our country. Politics is always divisive, but this election has seemed to be particularly injurious. Pray that people will regain perspective; that they will seek common good for one another.
- We need to demonstrate our love for each other as Jesus followers. Make it a point to love someone who follows Jesus who voted differently than you. Let them know your care for them in Jesus is greater than any political division.
- We need to continue to speak God’s truth, even when an election is not on the line. We need to declare life is precious; people are responsible for their lives; justice is for all; the poor need care; those who are foreigners need hospitality; prisoners need the presence of Jesus; and we need to take care of God’s creation. We need not only to talk about these things, but do these things. And no, God’s truth doesn’t fit into some neat political package. God is inconvenient that way.
- We need to be salt and light. God put us here in this time to make an impact on the world. We do that best by being different from the world. People often misunderstand this and think this is a call for Jesus followers to be weird. Not at all. It is call for us to add flavor (salt) and to give a different model of how to live (light). We want to live so people say, “I’m not sure I believe in Jesus, but I sure would like to have Jesus followers work for me.”
- Most of all, we need to follow Jesus. There is no way for God to have written every instruction we need in His word. We need to pray for guidance and trust the Lord will speak. We need to listen to whispers from God and follow Holy Spirit nudges. We need to be people of courage who are willing to be misunderstood because we do weird things like love our enemies.
I’m really not worried about the election. Jesus told me to cast all my worries on Him. My job is to listen to Him and follow.