Our country seems to be at a fever pitch of tension and animosity regarding politics. It’s a culture war on values, beliefs and convictions. It seems every day there is something in the news that each side can rally around, making their points and claiming their territory based on the story. It’s so tense that people’s ideas are being drowned out with the argumentative nature we are in.
So what do Democrats, Republicans and the Church have to do with each other?
This question yields many opinions and answers. There are strong feelings about what the church should do and what our role is. My agenda is not to stir debate but rather to inspire clarity with the heart of Jesus, as found in scripture.
First and foremost, we in America are extremely blessed with the freedoms that we have. The liberty to vote and to share opinions with free-speech is something much of the world cannot do today. There’s no question that we have been richly blessed with freedoms to live as we want, to worship who we want and to be able to achieve our goals. This in itself is a great treasure that all of us should value. Democrats and Republicans simply portray the political system that we have. While it is imperfect and flawed, it is still a privilege to be able to debate, share differences and to live in a free nation.
But where does the church come in?
This is where we have a rift within the church. Tense debates and arguments have broken out based on this very thing – but what is Jesus wanting his church to do?
Whenever our political affiliation divides us from others who proclaim Jesus, we have lost sight of his church. Who we worship is greater than who we vote for, and we should come together around the Christ and His saving grace. We cannot afford to let political pundits, news affiliates, and the agendas of politicians to divide the church. In fact, the political temperature in our nation should have no impact on you and me being the light of Jesus to the people around us. The greatest miracle is when someone receives Jesus as their Savior and Lord. It’s not getting people to vote like us and think like us on every point. If we cave into this, then we’re short-siding the heart of Jesus to those in our lives. We cannot afford this!
The eternal purpose of God is greater than America’s politics.
Matthew 16:18 says, “Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it.”
Matthew 5:14 and 16 says, “You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden…In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.”
Matthew 9:37-38 says, “He said to his disciples, “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.”
Notice in these verses the heart of Jesus. He has built His church on the rock and it will not be defeated. Jesus is the champion and you and I represent him. His church will thrive both in persecution and in freedom because of who he is.
Then notice, we are to shine his light and to do good so that people see God and glorify him. This is why he ask us to pray for laborers to go out because so many are looking for hope, they just don’t know who He is.
We are to be those laborers. We are to be those that shine his light. We are to be those who go about doing good, showing people Jesus and helping them. This is the heart of Jesus. We are to pray for the Democrats. We are to pray for the Republicans. We are to worship Jesus – and there’s a big difference in that!
I encourage you today, no matter how you feel or how you vote, please share Jesus to those around you. Stand up for Christ, shine his light, do good and help someone else find eternal hope. We cannot divide. We must unite around the name of Jesus. I believe every local church should be reaching for new people. We are to be a hospital where all of us are healed by his love. We are not to hide behind spiritual veneers, pretending we have it all together.
Like one preacher said, “When the sick church gets healed, this sick world will be healed.”
Please don’t cave in to the tension of our political climate. Rather rise in worship and purpose in our God. His light shines bright in the darkness, and his name has fame through the crisis.
You have purpose and you have meaning. You have something to share and you have something to give. So this week, who can you reach out to? Who can you pray for? Who can you be kind to?
It’s our time to be His Church so that others may know him.
I pray God uses you and does great things in you.
Live on purpose and the best is yet to come,