Image source: ClarissaClineK
It is election week in America, we are electing representatives and senators who make up the house of congress. These are powerful elected leaders who can advance the agenda of the president or frustrate the president if they wish. These local level election period can be a very stressful time as the politicians fight viciously to get the votes they need to win. Christians get caught up in the tensions as some politicians sell themselves as the candidates that will do what Christian voters want.
These local elections happen every two years, sometimes the Republican Party wins and are in control, at other times the Democratic Party wins. This repeat cycle of Republicans today and Democrats tomorrow will never end as long as these two parties are the main choices the people have. Yet, every time these elections come around, a number of Christians experience severe stress and lose their joy. It is easy to get so involved with the elections that we forget that our hope and joy are built on Jesus and not on our national governments.
Paul says to the Roman Christians in Romans 15:13 (NIV): “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
The Roman Christians were in Rome, the capital of the Roman Empire, where you cannot escape the news about politics. They were also living in a city that was not kind to Christians – they were mocked, they were persecuted, and even killed for their faith. Yet, Paul says to them “May God fill you with joy… as you trust in him…”. Their joy did not depend on whether the Roman Emperor was kind to them or not; their joy depended on whether they trusted in God.
Christian joy comes from knowing that: “The hope of the righteous ends in gladness, but the expectation of the wicked comes to nothing” (Proverbs 10:28). The Bible is saying faith in Jesus Christ will end in gladness for the believer, no matter what circumstances of life we pass through. Our joy has no boundary because it is a joy based on what God has done in redeeming us, and the gift of new life that we possess.
While we cast our votes in America, or anywhere else in the world, for the leaders of our countries, lets be intentional in not allowing election outcomes to steal our joy. The amazing grace of God upon us, the mercy and love of God that shines upon us, remain with us, irrespective of the outcome of elections. Whether my candidate wins or not, I continue to look to the Lord for joy, peace, and a new song in my heart.
To God be the Glory, Amen!