I was trying to enjoy a rare dinner out with my husband, but I kept getting distracted by the TV over in the corner.
The screen was full of angry protesters as the media kept the rest of the country up-to-date on the riots. Oakland, Baltimore, Kansas City, Milwaukee, Miami, Portland… I couldn’t even keep up anymore.
So many people so upset about Trump’s recent election, and they weren’t about to sit by quietly either.
I’m really not one to get involved in politics much, but with this recent election, it was pretty hard to avoid.
Opinions were strong and arguments were heated.
Turning back to my husband once again, I silently prayed a quick prayer for our nation, secretly hoping our city wouldn’t be next.
In scary political times times like these, it’s hard to know how to respond as a Christian.
We want to take a stand for what is right, but we also want to be submissive to our God-given authorities.
We want to champion for truth and goodness, but we also want to show endless amounts of grace and love, especially to those who are hurting (and many, many have been in this election).
It’s a fine line.
So how should we, as Christians, respond to today’s scary political climate?
Here are five things we absolutely MUST do.
The very first thing we need to be doing as Christians is to pray for those in charge. Both because the Bible commands it and because prayer is effective!
1 Timothy 2:1-2, 8 says,
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness…Therefore I want the men everywhere to pray, lifting up holy hands without anger or disputing.
2 Chronicles 7:14 says,
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
2. Seek Unity
If there’s one thing the recent election has done, it’s pit people against each other. How unfortunate!
The truth is, most Americans honestly do want what’s best for their families and for the country as a whole — we just have vastly different ideas about how to accomplish that sometimes!
One thing is for sure, however; we’re never going to accomplish much of anything until we learn to work together.
Sure, Trump may not be the perfect president (the other options weren’t all that hot either), but we all have faults and failings — we’re all just works in progress — and our leaders and fellow countrymen are no exception.
So instead of looking to tear each other down, let’s look for ways to come together. Instead of seeking our own best interests and making sure our opinions are heard, let’s stop for a second to look out for others’ best interests and to make sure they are heard.
After all, Philippians 2:1-4 tells us,
Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
3. Get Involved
Honestly, this is a hard one for me. I really am not a “politics” person, and I’d really rather just stay out of it.
My political affiliation is “In God we trust,” because I know that no matter who is in the White House, God is still on the throne and I’m trusting Him that it’s all going to turn out okay.
BUT sometimes the way He acts is by motivating everyday people to take a stand for what’s right. And when there is injustice in the world, and we can’t be bothered to do anything about it, what does that say about us?
Yes, trust in God. Absolutely. But don’t use that as an excuse for laziness. Get involved.
4. Watch Your Language
Fourth, please watch your language as you talk about the election, our leaders, our country, and our fellow countrymen.
As Christians, we are to be the salt and light of the world. And yet, how often do you see professing Christians online dishing it out with the rest of them!
I don’t care who you voted for; do NOT bad-mouth our president, our leaders or our fellow countrymen.
Colossians 4:6 tells us
Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.
Yes, you absolutely should talk about the issues, but in a way that is edifying, uplifting and productive. Otherwise, you don’t need to say anything at all.
5. Remember that God is STILL on the Throne
And last, but certainly not least, remember: God is still on the throne.
All throughout the Bible we read countless stories of amazing miracles He’s done with far less. No reason to think He’s going to stop now.
John 19:11a reminds us that,
Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above…”
Lamentations 3:37 says the same:
Who can speak and have it happen if the Lord has not decreed it?
And if that wasn’t clear enough, Romans 13:1 even puts it in terms of politics!
Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.
No matter how scary things seem, God is STILL on the throne and always will be. We just need to trust.
How worried are you about today’s political climate? What steps have you taken to deal with your fears?