How Can a Christian Vote with a Peace of Mind?
Every election cycle comes with a good amount of attacks, scandals, and playground-like na-na na-na boo-boos. We gravitate towards drama, while at the same time complaining of the lack of heroes. We can’t have it both ways. The melodrama of a soap opera doesn’t produce a strong protagonist.
How is a Christian to vote? More specifically, how can a Christian vote with a peace of mind? Since the Florida (where I live) primary is Tuesday, I answered this question in my sermon on Sunday. I’ll share with you what I shared with my church.
Know your vote matters. Elections change things. And in our country, we are part of the process. The people we elect make a difference—for better or worse. You may think the entire system is corrupted. I sympathize. However, not voting isn’t a good option. One of the mottos of my life is Be part of the solution, not the problem. Not voting makes you more of the problem than the solution.
I’ve heard the stats about individual votes not making much of a difference. Statistically, it’s true. But voting isn’t about stats. It’s about you being part of the process. For example, can you alone solve poverty? No. Should you still give to the poor? Yes. Your vote matters because it shows your commitment to the common good of society. No Christian should disengage from the common good.
When we vote, we’re not aligning all of our lives to a particular candidate. We are simply trying to better our country as best we can. Part of “loving your neighbors” is caring about issues affecting them (not just issues affecting you). You can be and should be a selfless voter, loving your neighbor as you vote for a candidate. Your vote matters, for you and for your neighbor.
Consider the whole of a candidate. Every candidate is going to say something stupid, and it will be plastered all over social media. The devices are recording 24/7. Here’s a line from a future attack ad: “Don’t vote for him because he said something bad while sleeping.” Mistakes are harder to hide these days, which is good. But the smallest clip can now make it across the ocean in a nanosecond. So look at the whole of what a candidate has done and the whole of who a candidate is.
Vote as a citizen of God’s kingdom. Our citizenship is in heaven. I love my country deeply, but my love for my Savior and His kingdom is greater. This world is passing away, so our primary goal is to build God’s kingdom. When we’re saved by Christ, we’re new creatures and given citizenship in heaven. I’m often asked, “What if you can’t vote your conscience?” My recommendation is to write in someone.
Recognize human dignity is the biggest single issue. Government is God’s servant for good. It is your duty to vote for people who will fulfill Romans 13. And there is no greater issue in our culture than life. Other issues are important, but where a candidate stands on human dignity and the sanctity of life will inform us of how they will govern. This is justice at its most basic level: We have an obligation to the most vulnerable in our society. We should vote for the candidate that will do the greatest good, and that begins with what you will do to defend the most defenseless: a child in the womb.
Choose honor over insults. This one isn’t about the candidates. It’s about you. You need to filter what comes out of you just as much as what goes in you.
Pray for those in elected positions. God wants all politicians saved. Pray for their salvation! It just might change your tone if you consistently pray for people in leadership. A revival of praying believers could spark a revival in the three branches of our government.
Every believer has a responsibility to vote. Don’t fall into the melodrama. Vote with a peace of mind.