Thursday, September 18, 2008

Right to vote

I do not like politics. Part of this is due to the probability that no matter who we have as a "leader", individuals are the ones who really make the changes. The changes that matter, anyway. For some reason, I also just can't bring myself to care much about high/low taxes, taking money from this or that person/group, or giving it, government programs, aid packages, etc. Someone always gets the short end of the stick on these decisions anyway. And who's to say it's the "right" or "best" person to get it?
So as for myself, I have almost completely 100% made up my mind not to vote. Now, if Billy Graham was on the ballot, I might make it to the polls! But, the fact is that I would be voting for the "lesser evil". Think what you will about the candidates, they all have their issues.
I believe strongly that it is not "a Christian's duty to vote." Where the heck do you get that?? I do believe that it is a Christian's responsibility to pray for our leaders and for God's will to be done in the outcome of the election.
Just to be sure to generate some discussion here, I also think that if you are a Christian voter, you have a responsibility before God to think morally first, societally (is this even a word?) second.

8 comments:

Jennifer Poole said...

I guess even if i do or don't consider it a "christian duty" to vote, just the plain fact that so MANY real people have DIED to let us have this freedom... to have this privilege makes me want to do my small part whether or not I think it makes a difference. (- I really do think it makes a difference.) Do you want to give the greater of "two evils" a chance to tell you what to do? Why not vote for the best situation for your family and country? If you really don't care, then do you really care about your country? What about all of our troops risking their lives so you can live here in peace? Like Dex?

Jennifer Poole said...

P.s. I agree 100% that it is our responsibility to pray for our leaders and God's will to be done. I also think that any leader that we might potentially have is most likely a human. Being that they are human, they sin. I guess no one is going to be absolutely perfect that could run for office, and I surely don't know everything about anyone. I just know that if one of the men won by 1 vote, and I didn't cast mine, I'd be pretty sick. One other thing. You stated that we should pray for God's will to be done in the outcome of the election. Well, couldn't God use some of our votes to do that? I mean, if He can use someone else's vote, why in the world couldn't He use ours? If the bad guy still wins, and we still voted, well, I guess that speaks clearly of what His will was. I'm not trying to pick a fight or anything, i guess I feel strongly about this. :) can you tell? :) pregnancy hormones do a number on me....

Sean said...

I'm sure you knew I'd have to comment on this one!

One critical issue for me in the upcoming election is that perhaps 2 (maybe even 3) Supreme Court Justices will be retiring during the next presedential term. Since the President gets to choose (pretty much) their replacement I have decided that it is necessary for me to vote for the candidate that has taken a firm stand on abortion and ignore all other issues of his that I disagree with.

Sarah, don't let all the politicking and media get you down about the election. I know that it is overwhelming and most times juvenile the way people get so worked up over candidates but this is the future of our country, state, county, city, and neighborhood. What happens today will most likely affect the country your children will grow up in. Besides it's not just the president on the ballot, there will be senators, House representatives, mayors, and city councilors. It's these local officials that will make the greatest impact on your life.

The Mulvihills said...

Sarah!

Just by reading your blog, any stranger would be able to see that you are a person of convictions. You teach your children the ways of the Lord, you discipline them, Brian works outside the home so you can be at home with your boys, you even have a link to Thrifty Mommy! All of these things point to the heart of your religious, financial and social beliefs. If you knew that one candidate has openly stated that he will make laws that could jeapordize or support what you believe in, wouldn't you be proud to give them your vote?

Josh and I talk a lot about politics around our house, whether in election season or not. I have seen firsthand in Rochester that my decision to vote and/or stand up for a cause that I believe in makes a clear difference in the actions of our elected officials. That combined with retaining my information from a source other than left-wing media such as CBS and NBC has also helped me to understand both sides of the parties.

Really, not voting is essentially voting for whoever wins. You are saying that you are fine with whoever is in office and will support what this person brings into being. Don't waste your vote, Sarah! It counts! I saw last night that in Minnesota, which goes Democrat most of the time, the race in a dead heat! Again, don't waste your vote because it does matter! I could go on forever, but please, don't rant and rave when the child tax credit goes down or when gay marriage and partial-birth abortion is legalized for any and all nationwide--take a stand now by voting!!! :)

Sarah said...

First of all, I want to make clear that I in no way am taking a stand here. I don't think it's wrong to vote! Sean, you read me accurately - I am very disillusioned with all the election hype and also by the fact that as far as I can tell, we are not "one nation under God", but one nation under the whims of society. I also did not mean to say that I think every Christian should stay home from the polls and pray. Prayer for our governing leaders is important no matter who gets elected.
Here is what I do think:
*Although a governmental decision can hold back societal evil for a time - like bans on gay marriage, abortions (to name the BIG 2) - we cannot all breathe a sigh of relief and thank God we don't live in California. True heart change is not going to happen because laws are made/changed. It's going to happen as followers of Christ make connections with hurting people who need Jesus.
*I do absolutely think it is important to stand for moral right.
*I do not think the most effective way to do this is at the polls, the place of outlet for many, many Christians - feeling like they're "speaking out" just because they check a certain box.
*I AM sick sick sick of politics. This tends to color my view - but I hope I am always open to God's leading in my life.
*Jenn, I appreciate your comments, and I appreciate people who stand for RIGHT, but I do not appreciate someone for the sole reason that he/she wears an army uniform. Sorry if this is very blunt. I am not proud of our country. I am thankful that God has granted us the grace of freedoms that we wouldn't necessarily have in other countries. It is God's hand.
*Sean again, you make some very valid points. I do tend to forget about those local officials (and the justices). And I tend to think that the local issues are much more likely to see change because of community voters than the national issues.
*I completely and totally agree that if I were to cast my vote for one or another, I would vote for the one who took a firm stand against abortion.
*I still do not think I am Biblically required to vote, only to pray. Show me from Scripture if you think I'm wrong here.
*I would abstain because
1)As I said, I'm sick of it all.
2)I cannot vote for a believer.

Who would Jesus vote for, anyway?

Rev. 3:15-16
"I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm--neither hot nor cold--I am about to spit you out of my mouth."

Sometimes I wish this country would just pick one and stick with it. It would be so much easier to be a follower of Christ!!

One last scenario that I thought about last night:
What if persecution against Christians was rampant in our nation? What if my husband was in prison because of it? And what if one of the candidates was known to be "lenient" in those matters? I'd vote for him.
What does this say about my stance? Do you see inconsistencies?

Molly Koop said...

In many cases we end up voting for the “lesser of two evils”, but when the “greater of two evils” is a man who voted AGAINST the born alive/infant protection act (a bill which stated that a child born alive after an “unsuccessful” late-term abortion has the right to live and not be murdered after birth—a bill that even many of the most liberal members of congress voted against) than the “lesser of two evils” has my vote.
I agree with Sean when he points out that the next president has the chance to appoint three new judges (something we also had to take into account during the last presidential race). Those men and women have a direct hand in the way our country’s laws are upheld. (If you haven’t been reading about the current situation in Mexico, you should. Despite the overwhelming percentage of citizens of Mexico that completely oppose legalized abortion, Mexico’s supreme court judges just recently decided to make abortion legal in their country. Sounds to me like Roe V. Wade…). We’re talking about millions and millions of innocent lives lost in this situation. And so even if only for a short time, as you say, Roe V Wade is overturned (or any law is made against any societal evil), we can have a hand in saving millions of precious lives.
Prayer for our leaders is certainly an important Christian duty, but there is always one person on the ticket who is more likely to make moral decisions for the country—and that man or woman deserves our Christian vote.

The Greene's said...

Just some thoughts - Don't you think it's possible for Satan and his forces to be at work in the way politics are presented/debated through all media sources these days for the direct purpose of making you so sick of it that you will not go and vote for someone that will chose to uphold Christian morals? Also, do you think that God's will is always imposed in every situation? Sports games? Who gets which job? Etc? I don't necessarily agree that just because a certain person gets elected that that is who God would will to lead. I do agree with Jennifer that God can absolutely use our votes to carry out His will, especially with people like you who are seeking and searching for God's will in your life. Do you think He'd want you to not only pray that His will be done in the elections, but that you would also prayerfully consider who He would have YOU vote for to accomplish it? God had a direct hand in appointing kings, even those who were big time sinners (David), but who still did great things with God's people. The earth needed human leaders then and we need human leaders now.

Sarah said...

Molly and the Greene's, I agree with almost everything you brought up. It's heartening to know that there are still a good number of Christians whose concern for life is at the forefront of their minds. I absolutely agree. Yes, this is an excellent reason to get out and vote.
The Greene's: I do think that God's will is carried out in every situation. He is sovereign, and He is in absolute control at all times. Even in the "little" things like sports games. I do not agree with your last statement of "the earth needed human leaders then, and it needs human leaders now". God's people begged God for a king and He gave them what they wanted - yes, it was all part of His sovereign plan, but it probably broke His heart to know that His people could not look to Him as their King. The first election - and God's people did not choose Him!
Even if the one chosen to lead our country is not a believer, it is God's hand - even when we can't understand why, it is God's hand.
I'm not sure if I really answered what you wanted or not, so feel free to ask for clarification on my thoughts.