WEDNESDAY’S COLUMN: THIRD’S WORDS
Today is a scary day; we’ve lost sleep, we’ve experienced no small amount of anxiety, we have legitimate fears about the future of our country, we have legitimate fears about our safety, economic prosperity, fundamental rights, and national security.
I’m writing this article on election day, about 16 hours before it gets posted and several hours before we will know the outcome of the election (NOTE: As of this publishing, it is still not decided). I had to study and think and pray because this day really has me (and most of us) on edge.
My hope is not in either man (personally, I cannot vote for someone who allows the murder of unborn children). If I’m honest with myself, I haven’t put much faith in God’s plan for our country this election cycle. I’ve been more focused on who I want in the White House.
The saying, “Our hope isn’t in the president,” is so often repeated at every election that it’s become very annoying to read. I know Romans 13 explicitly tells me that God controls the outcome of every election. I know that my hope isn’t in a man. I know that my rights are specific only to my brief time on earth. I know there are more important things to worry about as a Christian. Intellectually, these things are burned and imprinted into my mind. They just haven’t made their way to my heart! It’s a struggle I share with many Christians.
Maybe God puts whoever he puts in power to show us that we put way too much stock in man. Maybe God puts him in power to eradicate our prosperity and force us to rely on Him. Priorities become more clear when we have fewer earthly distractions. Maybe God puts him in power because our sins as a nation have brought us to the point of judgment. Maybe God puts him in power to create conditions similar to what the first century church experienced; the church grew, lost souls were saved, Christians who were faithful were all-in. Maybe God puts him in power to impress on us our own mortality and lack of control. Maybe God puts him in power because our wealth and ease has made many of us milquetoast Christians.
So, what if the outcome is more favorable for Christians? This should be a wakeup call. Maybe we’ve bought four more years of relative peace and prosperity. Maybe we can hang onto some rights. Maybe we can hang onto some earthly comforts. If the last couple of years have shown us anything, it’s that our lives can be changed dramatically regardless of who’s in office. What we must not do is maintain the status quo.
Regardless of who wins, we must start taking our faith more seriously. We must stop dividing the church. We must start thinking souls. We must desire, above all else, an eternal home with God and each other. More than just intellectually knowing these things, we must start living as if they’re real and as if our eternal destination depends on it.
Whoever the president is by the time this is published should mean little to us. Whoever it is, we have been given a reminder that we’re absolutely not in control and that God needs us to focus on eternity. No matter what, we win. If we suffer and die as Christians, we win. If we can save some souls who realize their need for God, we win. If we strengthen and grow the church, we win. Whoever the president is when you read this, we win!