I Timothy 2:1-2 implies that one cannot begin to righteously criticize the government unless one is praying for those leaders. Paraphrasing C.S. Lewis: whatever prayer does for others (and however it might move God), it certainly helps us. It may not change the hearts of others, but it changes our hearts– and that alone makes it worth the effort and discipline.
My prayer for Wednesday and beyond– with respect to the Presidential race, federal politics, and our country…
For the winner and the loser, that they would…
-accept God's gracious gift of salvation (if they haven't already);
-become fervent disciples of Jesus, walking with the Spirit in the process of sanctification;
-be much more comfortable in the goodness of God's Kingdom;
-care much more for the downtrodden and the marginal;
-walk away from self-gratification and hypocrisy
For the avid supporters of each, that they would…
-see their political idolatry and walk away from it
-no longer self-style as liberals and conservatives– and actually live up to one of those labels (or even, Libertarian!)
-have much higher standards in political matters
For whichever is elected, that they…
-wouldn't take us into war, bankruptcy, and another decade of tepid economic growth
-would not govern illiberally and work to further reduce civil liberties
-if Hillary is elected, that she will reverse course and not perpetuate our culture's general division between elites and deplorables
-if Donald is elected, that he will reverse course and not perpetuate hatreds of those in particular groups
-if Donald is elected, that he will not go all-crazy on us, getting us into all sorts of unnecessary trouble-if Hillary is elected, that she will not go all-Nixon on us, swamped in corruption and engaged in rampant lying
-if Hillary is elected, that she would begin to care for the working poor and middle class, rather than seeing them as political pawns
-if Donald is elected, that he would recognize the beauty and power of voluntary, mutually beneficial trade– even across political boundaries
But I won't pray about those things too much…
Will it really matter?
-Maybe with continued Congressional fecklessness, the President/Congress combo means that it doesn't really matter that much.
-Maybe science and coherent metaphysics will finally persuade the Left to fight for the civil rights of the most vulnerable in our society– the unborn.
-Maybe the GOP will move to a belief in smaller government and fiscal responsibility.
-Maybe the economy will continue to stay healthy enough to stay ahead of all of the regulations, subsidies, taxes, and garbage that will be passed in the next 2-8 years.
-God's Kingdom is so much bigger and better than all of this. “Our Father in Heaven…your Kingdom come; your Will be done on Earth…”
Or I won't pray for those things too much, because I have more important things to do.
-My vote is trivial next to my voice, so I will continue to speak prophetically against the tens of millions of “liberals” who are not liberal and the tens of millions of “conservatives” who aren't conservative; and against the political 1%– those who abuse government power to enrich themselves and harm others.
-My ability to impact people outside of government– family, students, neighbors, disciples of Jesus, etc.– is far more important than whatever will happen with our government. And so, I will redouble my dependence on the Spirit and my Kingdom work– to love and serve others.
Please join me– in prayer and in action.
Grace and peace to you on Election Night 2016 and beyond…eric