Tag Archives: Donald Trump

How to Vote as a Christian

What a time to be alive!  This is the closest I have ever followed an election.  Now that I am a parent of young kids, a family pastor, and starting to fit in my big boy slacks…I’ve been following this election season pretty carefully.  Although it has brought anxiousness and frustration, I’ve sat through the debates, followed articles on Twitter, and even read numerous postings from all the “experts” on Facebook.  In the end, sometimes I feel like this…201603_2000_hfcfd_smUntil now, I have bit my tongue in the social media world.  There have been numerous times when I have had to type out responses…and then delete them just so I could move on.  It was my therapy.  And it also saved me from saying things I would regret, cause division, and embarrass others.  This election has already taught me humility, self-restraint, and a whole lotta trust in my Sovereign God…a whole lotta.

As a pastor, I get asked this from time to time.  How should I vote in this election?  It seems like this election, for obvious reasons, has been the most highly debated among Christian circles.  My response was never “Vote for _______”, end of story, check please.  Instead, I was able to present the issues in the lens of a Biblical worldview, trying my best not to influence or push my biased opinion.  Here are some of my points that may help you vote as a Christian this coming election…

What’s the Bible Say?

Can’t I just read a Bible verse that will tell me what to do?  Well, you could try Ecclesiastes 10:2 (ESV).  Nice try, but I don’t think the application would be very accurate…clever…but not the original intent of the passage.

The best article I have come across for a Biblical approach is found here.  I encourage you to read it.  In fact, I’d rather you read that article than my blog.  Yes, there is a candidate leaning in this article, but the principles cannot be ignored.  But bear in mind this is written by a man whose theological books are used in most conservative Christian universities.  And when I did a poll last year with youth pastors about what theology book they use, it was Mr. Wayne Grudem’s.  It is well worth your time.

Social Issues That Make You Grab the Tissues.

Here’s where I have the most difficulty.  Abortion.  How could you vote for that?  Yes, it is just one issue, but the magnitude of that one issue is indescribable.  Truly, there are no words.  To think of someone who can defend a partial birth/late-term abortion.  It breaks your heart, and should not even be a discussion point…but sadly it is.  Why not just take the baby early?  Give that beating heart a chance.  I’ve seen an ultrasounds of my kids, and it is unimaginable.  I’ve been there when you are searching for  heartbeat.  Your vote can be a voice to all those little ones that do not have a voice.

Never Say Never.

I really needed to come to the election box with an open mind.  Sure, you can see some bias in my writing.  But the #never______ hashtags on social media don’t help anyone.   If you do, make sure your reasons are not just media or campaign fabrications.  You say I will never vote for Trump because of how he made fun of those with disabilities (proven to be a lie) or what he said about Hispanics all being rapists (slight exaggeration).  Or you could say believe the lies about Hillary’s tax plans where Trump may be stretching the truth (seen here).

The point is, do your research beyond watching character attacking commercials and the playground arguments that we call Presidential debates these days.  Take a look at the facts yourself from independent sites, watch the actual footage of accusations, and dig a little deeper.  It’s muddy water for sure, but I think you can still go fishing and catch what you need to make dinner (did that illustration help anyone?).

You’re Not Voting on Your Pastor.

It would be nice if we could just vote for our pastor to be a candidate.  A man who follows Scripture, lives a godly lifestyle, treats others and even their enemies with love and respect.  But you’re not voting on a pastor.  You’re voting on a presidential candidate.  This is a politician we are talking about here.  And remember, you are voting on their policies…and possibly even more bigly, who they will choose on the Supreme Court (this might make this the most important election of our lifetime).  These are very flawed candidates, and that is what is making this decision difficult, I get that.  Both candidates must have frog collections, because they each have warts galore!  Each have actions in the present and the past that cannot that are indefensible.  That can’t be denied, but we also must remember this is not a church vote for a pastoral candidate either.  I’m not condoning behavior, just providing a reality check.

Prayer.

Last but certainly not least, pray.  People we need to pray.  Pray for wisdom.   Pray for our leaders.  Pray for those voting.  Pray for unity among believers.  Pray for our nation.  Whoever you vote for, I encourage you to take the advice of Vice Presidential candidate Mike Pence…

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How the Oscars Got it Wrong

It is the film industry’s biggest event. All the greatest actors and actresses dress up for the award show put on by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Scientists. Over the years, it has morphed into something bigger than just a movie award show. Even this year, midst a controversy over racial equality, there was a big cloud hanging over the ceremony.

indexEach actor came to the stage either with sheer jubilation or with a certain agenda. The actors became activists. There were ideals that every person should get behind, like the elimination of domestic violence and abuse. Others encouraged young people to delve into the arts and use it as a way to cope with their difficult adolescence. Some actors, just in their utter joy was contagious, and even those who lost were seen with smiles on their faces.

leo-will-leonardo-dicaprio-finally-get-his-oscar-win-in-birdman-director-s-new-movie-jpeg-231902But the whole night was a build up to one man’s triumph. Leonardo DiCaprio had never held the golden trophy. Years and years of nominations ended in the same result. Many film experts claimed this would be the year. So, the audience had to wait to the very end to see if this Titanic hero would take the stage. And as the envelope opened, it was his name that was read.

Now, as we said before, the stage was already used for various causes and heartfelt tributes. What would Leo use this moment to promote? Drum roll please…Climate change. Now, hear my right on this one…I’m all for a better planet, but I will admit I’ve never been accused of one that hugs trees. That being said, it was a little surprising this was the activism he chose on the biggest night of his career. Here’s the thing, he wasn’t the only one. The Oscar winner for costume design (Jenny Beaven) said this about her movie which portrayed a earth that lay desolate and rid of many necessary resources… “Actually, it could be horribly prophetic, Mad Max, if we’re not kinder to each other and if we don’t stop polluting our atmosphere…You know, it could happen,”.

And here’s where they got it wrong. It wasn’t the controversial choice for best picture, or the Sly Stallone upset.  Rather, these actors point out the need for us to take care of the earth before it is too late, yet they neglect the one thing that will outlast this planet…their souls. They are missing it.

So let me ask you, when you are given the mic, what will you say? Will you promote a political candidate, pay tribute to the influential parties in years gone by, or conjure up a save the wales or world peace speech like a candidate on Miss America…or will you point people to the Gospel? Just like DiCaprio, he didn’t get many chances on the big stage, and may never get that chance again. Do you treat your conversations with the lost this way? Where you get one shot on this stage to promote the biggest cause, who happens to be the One who appoints the political leaders, could provide eternal peace, created the whales…and could give you eternal life.

Those that have been forgiven, you have been given the greatest reward of all time. The world needs to hear your acceptance speech. They need to hear you pay tribute to who got you here, the Director of your life now, and which way to the after party.Mike Brown Flickr mic drop

Drop mic.

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