[reprinted from September 15, 2008]
Jody note, August 8, 2012: Here we are coming up on another election. It is troubling to hear the â€œmob rhetoricâ€ from people left and right who are â€œgetting on bandwagonsâ€ because someone has identified someone (and I am speaking equally about President Obama and Governor Romney) that they can blame for what they perceive to be the downfall of our nation.
I hear people invoke our â€œFounding Fathersâ€ and attribute great wisdom and perfection and unity of their leadership. If we take the time to read our history, unity was something verbally and physically fought for. Wisdom? Many â€“ but not all â€“ were praying men who found their wisdom not in demanding their own way but in finding a way to work together, make hard decisions that didn’t make everyone happy, and in the end, forged a nation.
Let us make prayer, not destructive â€œput downâ€ rhetoric come out of our mouths. Let’s listen twice as much to God as we speak to others with our mouths. â€“ Jody, 2012
As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. Â Â Matthew 4:18 (NIV)
Jesus chose two fishermen to be His disciples. He did not choose educated or popular men. He did not choose influential or even wise men. So why did He chose them?
In less than two months, we, the people of the United States, will chose new leadership. Will we choose based on popularity? Party affiliation? Will we choose because of race? Sex? Will the faith that a candidate professes impact our decision? Will his or her moral life (or lack) impact our decision?
Jesus did not choose based on any of these questions that I can see. Jesus was God in the flesh, right? So He had â€œinsideâ€ information. He chose these disciples because He knew.
God has the â€œinsideâ€ information on the candidates also. Am I seeking Godâ€™s advice on who I should cast my vote? Does that sound too â€˜easyâ€™ or too â€˜sillyâ€™? I actually think it sounds hard! I think that to seek Godâ€™s desire and listen for HIS answer is going to be hard. It means that I will not take my agenda into the voting booth. I will be taking only Godâ€™s choices. I will listen with my ears tuned to HIS voice and not the mediaâ€™s spin or the candidateâ€™s advisers.
The older I get â€¦ the more questions than answers I have. The more I study the Bible and build my relationship with God the more I find myself leaving my agenda and know-it-all attitude behind and lean on Godâ€™s ways. Itâ€™s hard. Itâ€™s awesome! Itâ€™s hopeful. It means that the future will have more hope in it â€¦ because I trusted God for it.
â€œCome, follow me,â€ Jesus said, â€œand I will make you fishers of men.â€ At once they left their nets and followed him. Â Â Matthew 4:19-20 (NIV, my emphasis)
God Bless America by Irving Berlin (1938), sung by Kate Smith