October 31, 2016

I recently shared why I’m voting this election and my thoughts about the current political climate in our nation. I’d like to continue sharing my thoughts and draw some wisdom from the book of Nehemiah. In chapter 2:17-18 it says says:

“Then I said to them, “You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.” I also told them about the gracious hand of my God on me and what the king had said to me. They replied, “Let us start rebuilding.” So they began this good work.”

When Nehemiah returned to Jerusalem, he recognized the problem that the Israelites were living in. He acknowledged the trouble but quickly moved on to say, “Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.” Nehemiah demonstrated that even in recognizing the realities of dark times, we have been created to shine and become a part of the solution.

As we look at the trials we are encountering in our nation this election season, there is still hope! Instead of only focusing on the flaws of the candidates, I encourage you to consider some of these practical thoughts when deciding who to support:

1. Look for someone who is more concerned with solving root problems than staying in office for a second term.

If someone is more concerned with staying in office than solving problems, they make decisions motivated by the acceptance of men. Because terms tend to be three to four years long, politicians are under pressure to fix a problem and see the results within the term that they’re in office. So they create symptomatic cures, or band-aids, that cause problems that the next generation will be left to solve. Look for someone who has long term vision and is comfortable with making decisions that may disappoint some people now for the sake of long term improvement.

2. Look at what policies they’ll actually have influence over.

What moral issues are important to you that their specific office will have authority over? If their authority does not touch a moral issue that is important to you, rather be concerned about their talents and gifts. I am particularly passionate about abortion laws and am pro-life; however, this would not be as important to me when voting for someone who does not have any authority over abortion laws, like someone at the local level of government.

3. Look at what they’ve already created in the past.

How has a candidate lived their life? Their experience and character will reflect what they create in office. If they haven’t succeeded in other areas, how will they succeed in leading a city, state or country? Someone who has already started building a legacy before holding office will more likely carry that practice through into their political position.

4. Look for someone with favor.

I have to admit this is a tricky one because a political spirit can mask as favor when a candidate just tells us what they think we want to hear. A good leader has favor and grace to lead others well, and isn’t liked simply because they make decisions to please others.

5. Look at their core values.

How do they see the world? If you look at how candidates have consistently made decisions in the past, you’ll notice a pattern in the lenses through which they see things. These lenses, or core values, will come into play in how they make decisions, cast vision and fulfill the promises they made to the public.

As we quickly approach election day, my prayer is that you’ll feel confident casting your vote. I pray clarity and peace over our nation as we enter this turbulent season with hope.

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