>Such high hopes, such elevated expectations. The next President of the United States is going to bring sweeping “CHANGE!” to the nation we were told after the results in Iowa. We have such grand visions for the future and we expect these dreams to become reality through the political process. We have great fears and anxieties about the present and the future and we look to our president for security and solutions.
According to John Edwards’ 2nd-place victory speech, the next president is responsible for preventing liver disease, cleft palates, job layoffs, and a lack of clothing. Obama is guaranteeing health coverage for every person in the country. To listen to the Republicans, their presidency would bring us protection, prosperity, and safety. All the candidates promise to bring unity to the nation. The candidates promise to lift us up out of our current conditions and bring us into the Promised Land. And we believe them; we place our trust in them. And we are disappointed time and time again.
Good health, prosperity, peace, environmental stability. Are we to look to government, specifically the President, to bring these hopes to fruition? Many, many times we act as if we should. We get ourselves so geared up for presidential elections as if the fate of the world hangs in the balance. In one sense, the fate of the world does seem to hang in the balance when it comes to war, nuclear proliferation, and global terrorism. But the next President of the United States is not the one we are to look to for our health, prosperity, and peace. There is another who is even greater than the most powerful governments and kingdoms today.
We are disappointed by politicians time and again because it is God the Son who is King of kings and Lord of lords and he is sovereign over his creation, not the next president. The Lord is the one we ought to turn to first and foremost as we seek these blessings. Political leaders can serve admirably as good stewards of what God has given us but we do not place our trust in them. We need to remember this in 2008.
Political campaigns can bring the worst out of those who are supposed to be servants of the King. We conservatives do not want to see Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama become President. But what will happen if one of them does win the election? Some of us are actually gripped with fear over the prospects of another Clinton presidency. There are many principled reasons for working to prevent this from happening but we need not act as if God is no longer in control if a Democrat were to win in November. God will still be sovereign and we will continue to be about the work of the in-breaking kingdom of God.
I am not saying that we should not vote or that the election is unimportant. I am not saying “let go and let God.” What I am saying is that we ought to seek God for our health, prosperity, and peace rather than our temporary, fickle, and limited governments. If we truly trusted our sovereign God in these matters, just as God has commanded his people over and over again in Scripture, I believe we would be far less likely to continue to set ourselves up for disappointment when the next president fails to deliver on their promises. We will also be less likely to rip each other to shreds over who our next president should be. We will be less anxious over what will happen to us if the other party wins in November.
Presidential candidates make big promises and paint amazing pictures of the future. And we tend to have very high hopes about what a president can do about almost every area of our lives. I believe that this election is important and I intend to be engaged in the process but I want to urge us to step back and remember who we should look to for our strength, our wellbeing, our daily bread, and peace and unity among mankind. It is not the men and women who are running for office this year but our sovereign Lord and King. As we continue to maintain both our earthly and heavenly citizenships, let us remember which kingdom is the everlasting kingdom. We already have a Messiah so we don’t need to find a messianic figure in this election. We have a Savior and he doesn’t live at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.