This election cycle is really incredible. I mean, seriously. It’s a wild mix of comedy and tragedy. Everyone hates everyone. Both candidates are so profoundly flawed. And our world is in turmoil. There’s Syria and South Sudan. Closer to home, there’s racial tension and sexual aggression towards women. Republicans and Democrats alike are convinced that we are doomed if our respective candidate doesn’t win on November 8. It’s the train wreck we just can’t look away from. We are so stressed about this time in our nation’s history, that psychologists are giving us coping strategies; profound and novel strategies such as: turn off the TV/radio/Internet; avoid office conversation about politics.
It’s so tempting to take the bait and post and re-post the persuasive articles all over Facebook; to tweet and re-tweet all the awesome one liners, worthy of a moment on Saturday Night Live. (#KenBone) And I admit…there have been a few office conversations and chats with neighbors. Mostly tentative. We don’t want to anger one another. But c’mon…Donald and Hillary and their antics are the elephant in the room! How can we not test the waters and see if those we consider friends are at least as appalled as we are.
As Christians, we are praying. Praying for the candidate of our choice to win. “Please, Jesus! We know it’s clearly Your will for XX to win this election. Our nation will certainly be lost forever if XX doesn’t win.”
But I’d like to offer another view. Bigger than praying for prevention of the loss, I think Jesus is holding out for the redemption. You see, I think God is really into coming in to save, to turn around that which we thought was lost. This week in my morning devotions (cause heaven knows, those 15 minutes with my Bible and my notebook and steaming hot coffee are my only moments of solitude and clarity of the day), I read the story of Lazarus. You know, the dude who died and Jesus called out, “Lazarus, come forth!” And he came back to life, scaring the crap out of Mary and Martha and all the folks in town. Well, if you look back a few verses, in John 11, Jesus knew Lazarus was sick, and he totally chose to stay put in a town miles away! “…so the sisters immediately sent a message to Jesus which said, “Lord, the one You love is very ill.” 4 Jesus heard the message. Jesus: His sickness will not end in his death but will bring great glory to God. As these events unfold, the Son of God will be exalted. 5 Jesus dearly loved Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. 6 However, after receiving this news, He waited two more days where He was.” Wait, did you catch that? Jesus heard Lazarus was sick and he waited two more days to go to Bethany. What?!?! If He had just gone two days earlier, He could have prevented Lazarus’ death!!! Jesus, dude, you missed your chance!!
But, NO! Jesus went to Bethany when the time was right. When the train wreck had already happened. When despair was at it’s highest point. And then He did what was even more amazing than prevention, He did some hard core redemption! What do you think is more powerful: to stop the death or reverse it? Do you see where I am going with this?
While I am guessing Jesus has an opinion about the election, I think what He cares about a heck of a lot more is His crazy amazing power to redeem the outcome. To use the two days after the death to let the gravity of the outcome settle in. To let us absorb some pain; to struggle with our emotions; to feel stressed. Cause He’s in control no matter who is in control. (concept credit goes to Aaron Brockett, Traders Point Christian Church.)
I’d like to publicly thank both Hillary and Donald for making me look a little deeper into myself. To refine my view points. To question my political history; my thoughts, emotions; my faith. I’ve decided who I will vote for. And now I am enjoying the entertaining ride, the best part of which will be watching our Jesus redeem whatever mess we find ourselves in, so long as we are humble enough to watch for the miracle.
Disclaimer: My viewpoints are not necessarily reflective of my employer, or any local, regional or national organization that I belong to. As a matter of fact, I pretty much just speak for myself. Please keep that in mind.