Monday, November 3, 2008

The election - just do it

I've gotten a lot of emails lately that make me feel as if the sky might fall depending on the outcome of tomorrow's election. So, have you voted yet? I have - only took me 25 minutes. The hours are counting down for election day and I hope that you too will choose to participate.

I want you to vote not because I'm convinced that one candidate will move us closer to God than the other - no candidate, political party, or form of the human system of government will usher us into the Kingdom of God. Sure, some forms have proven more beneficial than others, and some leaders are better than others. But the Old Testament is one giant case study that reveals god-following leaders (like Moses) bearing godly laws (like the 10 commandments) can't make man or society what God would have us be. We need the cross and the Spirit of God for that. I also recall the disciples mistakenly thinking Jesus came to set up and lead a political government. He corrected them.

Nor do I want you to vote because I'm convinced this is the most crucial time/election in history ever. Many feel that way right now, and they feel panic. This election is "historic" and there are serious crises going on in America. But the people of God have seen worse. Consider the 400 years of slavery in Egypt, or the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D., or the holocaust. But nothing that has ever happened in this world, or will happen, throws God off course. Eventually God's Kingdom will be the kingdom of the earth ... but not because we finally elected the right people to office and got all the laws written right, but rather because God vanquishes Satan.

I want you to vote because I want you to engage in your life, in your community, and in your culture. Vote not only for your next president but for your local and state government positions as well. Often times those leaders make a far great difference in our daily lives than who is sitting in the oval office.

I want you to vote because it is a privilege that many do not have, and it does make a difference. Many people suffer under dictatorships. Voting is a privilege that people have died for - both willingly and unwillingly. And we get to freely do it in this country.

I want you to vote because I think it's important that you think and pray through the issues, make your voice heard as best as you feel led, and then trust God to manage the outcome ... just as Daniel did in the last passage we read together. If you continue reading in Daniel, you'll see it revealed that God - not our president or kings - is ultimately in charge here. (See also Romans 13:1 linked here)

Finally, I want to leave you with a stirring thought from John Ortberg:

Imagine that we elected all the right people to all the right offices. President, Congress, governors, right down to the school board, city council members, and dog catcher. Let's imagine that all of these ideal office holders instituted all the right policies. Every piece of legislation—from zoning laws, to tax codes, to immigration policy, to crime bills—is just exactly the way you know it ought to be.

Would that usher in the kingdom of God?

Would the hearts of the parents be turned toward their children?
Would all marriages be models of faithful love?
Would greed and pride be legislated out of existence?
Would assistant pastors find senior pastors to be models of harmony and delight?
Would human beings now at last be able to master our impulses in the areas of sexuality, and anger, and narcissism?

Would you finally become the woman or man you know you ought to be?

In the words of theologian Macaulay Culkin: "I don't think so." Because no human system has the ability to change the human heart. Not even democracy, or capitalism, or post-modern-emergent-ancient-future-missionalism.

So, my friends, I'll go out and vote. But I don't expect the sky to fall, no matter which candidate is elected. (It will only fall if God allows it to, and even then He has a plan for its renewal.) And I don't look to my political leaders or our government to accomplish what only God can do - though I do want the best leaders possible and I care deeply about our country.

I know some will disagree with me here, and that's okay - we have freedom of speech. :) But I hope all will join me in praying for His kingdom to come and His will to be done in America, and on earth, as it is in heaven ... through His power and in His name.


  1. Amen! Well written! No I have not voted, that is because my hubby LOVES to vote the day of! For him it is more exciting...I do it for him. If not, I would have voted last week ;)

  2. I'll be there with bells on. :-)

    This is a great post. The sky will not fall. As many co-workers have talked and complained about all the bad politicians and negative media, etc. I couldn't help but to think in my head (too chicken to say to these unbelievers) is that we are FREE. We are still a great country regardless of our huge debt and corrupt system. We are free! Much more than many countries and we can worship in freedom!

  3. I agree, "well written". I have said to others several times that people have forgotten that God still owns this universe. He set it in motion according to His plan. Yes, I will vote, but only God can make this a perfect world and that won't happen until Jesus returns. I'm still listening for the sound of the trumpet. Until then I will trust my Heavenly Father to take care of His own.
    Blessings to you, Rachel,

  4. i early - voted so i will not have to wait in any lines! yea for me!

    blessings ~

  5. I disagree - I believe that whoever is elected will make a dramatic difference in America and in the lives of America. I have not heard anyone say that they were looking for perfection in this election. I do believe that there is a choice before us and that choice is choose this day whom you will serve. If in fact this privilege we have in this country to elect our leaders does not make a difference...then why bother? Is God still God most definitely He is and always will be...I believe this election the Lord is showing us His Mercy and Compassion by providing an opportunity to each and every one of us to return to Him...much has come to light about the candidates and we are making a choice and I do believe that the choice is between good and evil.

  6. Debrah, you are welcome to disagree with me, my friend!

    It's not that I don't have an opinion as to which candidate(s) is a better choice for our country, I do and I will vote for them. But if we wake up on Wednesday and our choices are not elected, I don't want us to be without hope. And I don't want us to misjudge God's ability to work His will for us, no matter who is sitting behind the president's desk. Their power is real, but limited.

    Thanks for commenting, and thanks for voting!

    Fondly ~ Rachel

  7. FABULOUS post, Rachel!!
    And I will be at the polls tomorrow bright & early!!

    pat in nyc

  8. A hearty "Amen" from me, too, Rachel. I'll be voting and joining many in prayer as well.

  9. Thanks for your message Rachel.

    Debrah - I choose who I am going to serve and I choose to serve the Lord. The president that we elect is suppose to serve the people. Only God is truly good and God's will will be done no matter who is elected into office today. Neither one of our choices is a perfect choice.

    Praise the Lord that He is Almighty and that His Way is always just!

  10. I voted,,,good morning!! Go McCain!

  11. I have had many conversations with my grown children about this election and the importance of engaging in the voting process. It is a critical time. For the first time since I have had the privilege of voting we may see the rights that we have come to cherish slowly slip away.

    If one party gets control of all 3 legislative branches, with the media firmly entrenched in their camp, the checks and balance system will be threatened.

    Our God is mighty and He will prevail through any turmoil we might face. He has called us to stand up and stand firm. The shifting sands may cause our nation to stumble but our faith is secure on the Solid Rock.

  12. Rachel, thank you for an intelligent, thoughtful and God-directed post.

  13. I was wondering if you were going to comment on the election, Rachel. Glad you did. I really believe both things that have been said-by Rachel and by Debrah.
    God is God, and He is in TOTAL CONTROL.
    He also has given us Free Will, and the ability to choose right or wrong. I believe the one elected to President and the ones elected to congress, senate, judges all play an important role in Free Will. They determine for society what is acceptable and not. I will still be the same Bible believing, born again Christian tomorrow, but my rights and ability to serve my Lord may change based on who is elected. With same sex marriage being encouraged, teaching of same sex unions to kindergarteners, partial birth abortions being supported, the possibility of a Christian speaking against homosexuality being a "hate crime" etc.....all of those things jeapordize our Christian rights. Not that it will change how I choose to live for Christ.....I am kind of rambling....but I do believe it makes a difference who is elected tonight. I also KNOW THAT GOD IS IN CONTROL NO MATTER WHAT!

  14. I must say these could be very frightening times with the possibility of a president who supports abortion, same sex marriage and redistributing the wealth. The real point is that God is still in control and He will work his good even through all the above evils. I have prayed for the election with the Presidential Prayer Team since early this year. They post a prayer each day. I am still praying as the later polls have closed.

    Thanks so much for you post Rachel.

    Latrobe, PA

  15. I voted! Thank you for your words. I needed to hear this as I'm not feeling personally excited about the results but know that God has it handled.

  16. Now that we know the results of the election, we must all unite as Christians and pray for Barack Obama. Pray that his desire will be to lead as God would have him lead. Pray that he will be convicted regarding the casual way in which he treats abortion, same sex marriage and other moral issues. We need to pray that Christians will have the courage to continue living out their lives for Christ. And really mean it when we say GOD BLESS AMERICA! Not with wealth, but with His mercy, grace, and love.
    Kelly T.


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