This is the fourth presidential election I’ve been able to participate in. Out of every election I’ve been old enough to care about, I am the most excited about this one – by far! Here’s why:
I can’t wait for the ugliness to stop. Words. Actions. Insults. Social posts. News Agencies. From the debates to the candidates themselves and even down to individual voters, people have just been ugly. I’ve seen people support, sometimes inadvertently, the ugly policies, beliefs, and character traits of the candidates. I’ve seen Christians supporting things no faithful Christian should ever support. It’s an understatement, but this whole election has just been ugly, and I’m ready to see it stop.
I’m excited to move on. Whoever the next president ends up being, I’m looking forward to just moving on with life. I’m tired of the consistent illogical, unbalanced banter from many social media posts and news agencies. It doesn’t further the discussion, it just makes people upset.
Even though it seems like the person elected in November is going to instantly make or break our nation (maybe either of them would break us?), this most likely isn’t the case. Sure, the next president may contribute to our eventual demise, but probably not right away. Every four years the media makes it look like our nation is in a crisis and only candidate __________ has the answer. It’s no different this election. I’m ready to just move forward and start trying to heal from our world’s poor political choices.
I’m looking forward to watching God work. One way or another, the Lord has a plan for the next president (Romans 13:1ff). Will He use this president to further lead our nation to its demise? Will He use the next president to bring our nation into turmoil? Will He somehow use the next president to help people draw near to Him? Only the Lord knows, but I’m ready to see what He does next.
I’m not excited about the candidates. I’m not excited for the future of America. I’m just excited for all of this to be done so we can move forward. The question is, “How?” How can we move forward?
In C.S. Lewis’ brilliant work, “The Screwtape Letters,” the senior devil, Screwtape, is instructing his nephew Wormwood about how to continue to deceive men. A modern unknown author has taken C.S. Lewis’ concept and applied it to today’s political situation. So while the quote below isn’t actually from “The Screwtape Letters,” it fits right in with our discussion:
My Dear Wormwood,
Be sure that the patient remains completely fixated on politics. Arguments, political gossip, and obsessing on the faults of people they have never met serves as an excellent distraction from advancing in personal virtue, character, and the things the patient can control. Make sure to keep the patient in a constant state of angst, frustration and general disdain towards the rest of the human race in order to avoid any kind of charity or inner peace from further developing. Ensure that the patient continues to believe that the problem is “out there” in the “broken system” rather than recognizing there is a problem with himself.
Keep up the good work,
Sobering words, aren’t they? And yet they hint at the actual solution to our problem. A true solution, mind you, God revealed to us long ago. So, how can we move forward and actually improve this world? By taking a really long, hard look at our own integrity and do some serious fixing. Let’s honestly “set our mind on things above” (Colossians 3:1-2). Let’s truly “renew our mind” away from worldliness (Romans 12:1-2). Let’s actually make sure our mind dwells on attributes that are “true, honorable, pure, lovely, of good repute, excellent, and worthy of praise” (Philippians 4:8). Then, let’s evangelize and help others to also be people of virtue, character, and integrity (Matthew 28:19-20; Titus 2:11-13). One person at a time we can impact our nation, but it starts with “yours truly.”