So … have you voted yet? I usually do my best to avoid political statements on this blog. This isn’t a forum for me to get on a political soapbox, and I really don’t want to start a discussion, especially during this election season when so many of my friends can become so completely uncivil toward each other.
But I have a thought to consider. And if you aren’t one of the people who voted early this year, I just wanted to share a thought I had for myself, and maybe it will be encouraging for you. Or maybe enlightening. Or maybe enraging. I suppose that’s possible.
Today’s verse is Luke 9:23.
Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me.
I’m going to be brief about this because Jesus said this pretty succinctly. If you want to follow Christ, if you want to call yourself a true Christian, you have to turn over your life to God. You have to deny what you want. You have to surrender your whole life. And you have to follow Christ.
Taking up your cross is a metaphor. Christ isn’t saying that we have to go be crucified somewhere, but what He is saying is that we have to be willing to give up everything we think we need for Him.
It’s very popular in American Christianity to talk to the talk. It’s easy to post messages of faith on your Facebook wall. It’s easy to go to church and look like a Christian. It’s easy to give God part of your life. It’s easy to give Him part of your heart. But that’s not what He says to do.
God wants it all.
And if you have given your whole life to Christ, you cannot separate your political beliefs from your belief in the Bible. You can try. But if you succeed, if you believe politically something that the Bible says is wrong, how do you justify calling yourself a Christ-follower? If you deny the very truths that Christ believed, how can you identify with Him in your faith but not in your political position? How can you be double minded like that?
Again, this isn’t a political statement as much as it is a desperate cry for reason among the people who say they follow Christ. Think. Think about how illogical you are being.
I don’t care how you vote. I am actually at the point where I don’t care who wins. I truly believe this country is screwed either way. But my heart is grieved to the point of pain at so many people who say they follow Christ who obviously don’t know what it means give their lives to Him.
I have struggled with this. Because there’s a part of me that wants to keep faith out of politics. Because if you bring faith into any arena in America now, you rapidly become unpopular. And little people pleasing me likes to be liked.
But people didn’t like Christ. He wasn’t popular first. And I have chosen to follow Him, and that means bringing His truths and His choices and His sacrifice into every arena of my life — not just the ones where people agree with me.
America is a country of compartmentalized Christians. That’s how we can get away with saying we follow Christ but living our lives however we want.
It doesn’t matter who wins the election tomorrow. Well, maybe it does. But it doesn’t matter as much as everyone seems to think. Whatever happens tomorrow, the hope for our country and our world isn’t sitting in the Oval Office in Washington, D.C. There’s no man alive in our world who has the real answers to solve the problems we’re facing.
Our only real hope is Christ. And I’m on His side. And He supersedes political parties, religious denominations, tax brackets, life situations, social class, and skin color. He is the only answer.
So … go vote. But if you say you follow Christ, give your whole life to Him and not just the easily hidden part.