We have been told over the past few months that the upcoming election is the most important one of our lifetimes. We have been told this by the Republican candidates and their supporters; we have been told this by the Democrat candidates and their supporters. By both sides the consequences of the other party winning are painted in very dark terms. “The end of democracy.” “The end of our country as we know it.” “Socialism and Fascism will take over.” “The Supreme Court will be packed.” And on and on. Catastrophe, we are told, is in store if the other side wins.
From what I have been observing, there are many believers who have embraced this haunting narrative from both sides, depending on their political leanings. So, here is the question we believers need to ask ourselves: What if our side loses, then what? How do we relate to one another as brothers and sisters in the Lord? Do we continue to do battle? Do the winners continue to defend their candidates and the losers harp and complain about the winners?
Whatever the outcome of next month’s election, there will be a golden opportunity to do what we should always be doing as God’s children—trust that he is in control. We can have our opinions and we can vote the way we deem best, but we must accept the outcome, whether or not it is to our liking. Our faith must carry us on, not in despair, but in hope because the Lord is working out his will. We may not understand it, and we may in the moment not like it, but he is the Lord. And if he allowed our candidates to lose, then we have no recourse but to move forward in trust that he has a plan. There is no need to fear because as John says, “Perfect love casts out all fear.” (I John 4:18) If we love the Lord, then we have no reason to fear the outcome of this election. He has used evil people, people merely seeking power and influence, to accomplish his will. He used Pharaoh, Balaam, Jeroboam, Judas Iscariot, and many more down through history. They didn’t thwart his will, but rather were used to accomplish it.
As I wrote many months ago, our perspective on events can be very shortsighted. Like Peter expressed on behalf of the rest of the disciples when Jesus spoke of his impending death, it can be difficult to accept any other plan than what we have deemed best. But the Lord is so much bigger than us and his plans much better than ours. So, when things don’t go according to our plans, we have to accept and embrace that his plans are better even if they don’t seem like it at the time.
This is trust, and we as his children need to exhibit it to our fellow believers and our fellow countrymen after the election results are in. Likely, there will be a lot of disappointment, handwringing, and perhaps even some volatility. We believers, thus, need to be the encouragers, the ones maintaining hope, and the ones speaking words of peace. There is no reason to contribute to or inflame an already precarious situation. We trust in the Lord. What do we need to fear?
© Jim Musser 2020 All Scripture references are from the New International Version, 2011.