By Rev. Dr. Brian Gigee
“Whoever governs fairly and well, who rules with a fear-of-God, is like the first light at daybreak, without a cloud in the sky, like green grass carpeting earth, glistening under fresh rain.” 2 Samuel 23:3-4
“Vote. Elect. Act.”
How many votes does God get? Does God have a favorite candidate? What does God think when two or more people run for office against each other and they all say, “God is on MY side?” Does God even take sides?
When I began writing this column, I had an agenda. An important one. Unlike the “Seinfeld” show, a story about nothing, most writers do what they do with some sort of cause. There’s a point. My point’s the same– everyone has faith. We all believe in something. And some of the stuff we believe in has a positive outcome and other stuff we believe in breaks our hearts. Sports can be that way. Marriage has its moments. Placing all our faith in our children… well, that only works for a while. The same goes for politics. People make promises. Promises are broken. People get let down. So, yeah, again. Faith matters. Always!
The Bible doesn’t say a whole lot about voting. Some verses can be stretched. But there are plenty of places where people are elected and appointed… like when Samuel sought out young David to be king and when Jesus’ disciples took a vote to see who was to replace Judas, Jesus’ betrayer. Even the pope or a local pastor arises to their post via ballots cast. And if you are paying attention these days there are a lot of people out to garner your vote in this election year. March 3 will be here soon and that’s why I’m sharing a few thoughts about it!
As I was turning 18, my father pulled me aside and shared with me this remarkable thing… He said, “you know, pretty soon you’ll be able to vote in the presidential election. It’s a high privilege that we get to vote at all. It’s one of the great private moments we have. In fact, it’s pretty sacred. I walk into the voting booth, pull the curtain (there were curtains in those days!), turn my back on the world, cast my vote and then walk back out into life and be the best American I can be and support the people who are elected.” Whoah! And I never knew how my father. He never told anyone who he voted for. Never. No one. Whoah 2.0! As an ardent ‘independent’ I have heeded my dad’s advice and posture. I’ve never told anyone either and like my father, I try to be a good American and support those elected into office!
In a country that seems fractured with about 65+ million Americans voting one way and another 65+ million voting the other way… no one seems concerned about the over 150+ million Americans who do not vote at all. Maybe more. I call them the “Apathetic Party of America” (the APA!) and they could elect me or you to be President if they cared. In the end, I think that’s the real problem. We always need saving from ourselves as selfishness gets far too many votes.
The Bible tells us God votes. God votes for us! St. Paul wrote… For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works…” (Ephesians 2:10) We’re called “God’s elect” as a high place of trust has been given to all. Maybe that’s God’s faith in us! One vote at a time. You get God’s vote! She gets God’s vote! I get God’s vote! We all get God’s vote! Faith matters. Be the best citizen you can be! Vote. Elect. Act.