Personally, this was my seventh election to cast a vote. Sometimes, I have cast a vote for the winning candidate. Sometimes, I have cast a vote for a losing candidate. I have to admit that politics is not a subject where I feel very grounded. I watch the news from time to time and can usually stay up to date on the “majors,” but the inner workings of our government and its policies and practices are somewhat unknown to me.
That said, what I DO feel grounded in is the directives of the Bible.
For instance, the Bible states the Greatest Commandment: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” What if we loved God FIRST? How would that change our lives? How would that change our behaviors? How would that change our attitudes? Hey… how would that change our political feelings?!?
THEN, if there was any wiggle room, Jesus goes ahead and throws in a second commandment (which he says is like the first): “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” What if we put THAT into practice. Would it change our words and actions toward others? Would it change the way we respond to people? Would it change what we put on social media? Would it change the way we speak about our current (or any past) president?
I’m pained by what I read on social media (and my pain didn’t start with the current election cycle… it only seems like this election has elevated the “meanness”.) Here’s a suggestion, in the area of politics, let’s listen twice as much as we speak. Let’s keep the issue at hand rather than being personally attacking. Let’s be fair with our fellow man and woman. Let’s leave the vitriol on the sideline. Let’s show by our behavior that we love God FIRST and that leads us to love our neighbor just like we love ourselves. By the way, that goes WAY beyond the person that happens to live in the house next door or across the street.
In a nutshell, what if Christ Followers started a whole new discussion. What if it wasn’t about politics, but about personal behavior? What if it wasn’t about who is in the White House, but about what goes on in OUR house? What if it wasn’t about social media, but about going out and making a personal connection with someone who needs a friend? What if it wasn’t about policies or agendas, but about love, care, respect, and honor.
Wouldn’t THAT be a better world in which to live?