Blessed be the name of God forever and ever,
to whom belong wisdom and might.
He changes times and seasons;
he removes kings and sets up kings;
he gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to those who have understanding;
he reveals deep and hidden things;
he knows what is in the darkness,
and the light dwells with him. –Daniel 2:20-22 ESV (emphasis mine)
I’m a bleeding heart. An open book, like ridiculously open. I try and fight this part of me, but sometimes it’s a useless battle. That being said, many of you already know my plans for November 8, 2016 do not likely include a visit to vote in the election. (I will have three kids at home and several parent/teacher conferences that very day, so there’s that.) I’ve shared via facebook that my faith (my conscience/my spirit) will just not allow me to vote for either major candidate. I fully realize that your faith (your conscience/spirit) may be convicting you in a different manner and I respect that.
But this post isn’t about voting or not voting. It’s not about Trump or Clinton. It’s not even about November 8, 2016 (though with all my conferences that day I’ll be running around like a headless chicken with three children in tow. In other words, #sendhelp).
This post is about what I’m not hearing enough of in this election season. *Spoiler alert* – His name is Jesus.
Now, maybe it’s being said but not loud enough or often enough or with enough conviction. Or maybe it’s just not being shared on social media and we all know the regular media is bent on bad news. I’m hearing very little about trusting in Jesus.
But what’s out there on the internet flashing across our screens? What I’m mostly seeing is evidence of people wringing their hands in fear. I’ll admit right now I’ve likely appeared to be doing that myself. Honestly, it’s not fear for me – it’s more shock and awe. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.
Want to know who else in not wringing his hands in fear over this election?
God. The Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. (James 1:17 ESV)
Jesus. He said, “in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33 ESV)
The Spirit, who helps us know that “there is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear.” (1 John 4:18 ESV)
The God of the heavens, the Savior of the world, and the Spirit of Truth are not sitting up there (or within us) worried about this election.
They have no fear. They know the outcome and God has either ordained it (as Daniel 2 seems to say) or He has allowed it. So whatever that outcome is, we are to trust our God. The wind and waves obey Him. He makes good come from what Satan means for harm. He brings beauty from ashes and turns sorrow into joy. He made every. single. thing and still and forever will be sovereign over every. single. thing.
I worry we are doing this all wrong, Church. I worry we are complaining rather than loving. I worry we are living out of our fear, rather than living out of our faith. I worry we are more focused on the state of our government than the state of our own hearts. I worry our eyes are on our security more than on our giant, capable God, who is not worried or deterred.” –Jennie Allen
But here are many of His people, fretting over who will become POTUS. We are arguing with each other over voting or not or choosing “the less of two evils.” We are trying to guilt each other into the convictions we ourselves hold. But my faith informs me that God has already determined the outcome of the election, regardless of my vote or yours. If the thing is rigged, He knows it. He knows what is in darkness, remember? He knows the truth about the Clintons and the truth about Trump and the truth about the hearts of every person in our nation and also? He knows what He’s doing. Do we believe that He does?
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.” — Isaiah 55-8:9 ESV
I believe. In moments where I let fear sneak in, I remind myself of the Truth. He is good. He is in sovereign. Jesus has overcome the world. In this situation, all I am required to do is humbly follow the leading of His Spirit within me. (And just FYI: I’m following the leading and praying about the humbly part. How’s that for being an open book?)
The United States of America will not be “stronger together” until the people of God unite and call out to Him and Him alone. God says, “if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14 ESV)
And the only name that can “make America great again” is Jesus. He is the one and only place in which our hope can be found. It’s not found in any political party or campaign promise or candidate or election outcome. Our hope is found in Jesus Christ who rose from the dead to save us from sin. Only in Him. Even if the worst happens, whatever that may be, those who call on Him and follow Him always have great joy set before them. (Heaven!)
So no, this post is not about presidential candidates or November 8, 2016. It’s about choosing which name to proclaim today, tomorrow and always.
It’s only and always Jesus.
And I think if we speak and hear more of Jesus, truth will spread and hope will rise, both now and in all the days to come.