November 10, 2012

Good Post-Election Prayers and Thoughts

Instead of joining in those who are wailing or celebrating election results, at the local, state and federal levels, I am going to let God do the talking, though I am taking the liberty of highlighting some of His words.

For those that voted against the people who ended up being elected, this is what God told the Isrealites to do after they had been carried away to Babylon in defeat:

This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” 
Jeremiah 29:  4-7

If God wanted the Isrealites to pray blessings for their "enemies", what do you think He wants us to do for our government representatives who are doing what they feel is for the benefit of our country, even if we don't agree with them on what constitutes a benefit?

A second example is found in Psalm 61:

Hear my cry, O God;
    listen to my prayer.
From the ends of the earth I call to you,
    I call as my heart grows faint;
    lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For you have been my refuge,
    a strong tower against the foe.
I long to dwell in your tent forever
    and take refuge in the shelter of your wings. Selah
For you have heard my vows, O God;
    you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.
Increase the days of the king’s life,
    his years for many generations.
May he be enthroned in God’s presence forever;
    appoint your love and faithfulness to protect him.
Then will I ever sing praise to your name
    and fulfill my vows day after day.

Several sites offering historical background for this Psalm seem to feel that David wrote it while running away from his own son, Absalom, who had organized an insurrection against his father and was seeking to kill him and all of his followers--a horrible betrayal of the deepest trust and a potential severance of all family ties of love.  Okay, if you have read the story, you know that Absalom and David weren't very close and that David had banished his son for fratricide in an earlier incident.  Still, David prayed for the next king's benefit and blessing, even when the king was seeking his demise.  And in that really hard place, David knew who to turn to for help.

Finally, we have instructions from Jesus, son of God, God-With-Us, King of Kings, The Redeemer and Savior, who WILL one day return to set up his eternal kingdom and end all political turmoil:

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. Matthew 5:43-45

As I have said before, Jesus doesn't just talk the talk:  while he is on the cross, he asks God to forgive those who called for his crucifixion.

So here are three distinct walking orders from God to stop moaning and whining about the election results, and calling those in the opposite political camps all sorts of names as if you are stuck in middle-school mentality/maturity level.  Suck it up and show respect to the people that God has put in power over us.  This doesn't mean that we have to be silent when we see abuses of power, lies being presented as truth, injustice or skullduggery.  It also doesn't mean that when someone of the opposite political persuasion repeatedly voices their opinion just to make sure that you know where they stand, you are not allowed to express your opposing opinion.  I would just ask that you do so respectfully, knowing that the other person is also made in the image of God and dearly loved by God.  There will be other elections in which we can work to get the people we want in office.

And for those who are celebrating because your candidate(s) won and ESPECIALLY for those people who were just elected/re-elected, remember this:
He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
Micah 6:8

May God bless you and keep you!

1 comment:

Jane Hoppe said...

Well said, Kris.