Passion and politics

I am passionate about politics as my family can attest.

Passion can be good – it can drive change for the better.  But it can be bad, too, building lasting bitterness and hatred.

So, how should Christians like me react to disappointment in politics?  After all, someone is always disappointed in democratic elections like the one coming up in a few days in the United States.

Perhaps political animals like me need to put things in God’s perspective.

Here’s a question to ask myself: Is my candidate’s victory more important than loving my neighbour?

Jesus would say: “No.”  Christ called on us to love God with everything we have and our neighbours as ourselves.  (Mark 12:29-31)

Some might say that is close to impossible for them.  Perhaps they have had angry debates with a colleague or friend and have been hurt by what they said.

But Christ never said that following him would be easy.  On the contrary, he said there would be trouble for his disciples (Matthew 10:16-20).

Yet he did promise help – the help of the Holy Spirit.

In fact, the Christian life is all about discovering how weak we are and how much we need God’s strength.

The apostle Paul had to find this out for himself when he pleaded unsuccessfully with God to remove a “thorn in his flesh” and wound up embracing God’s response: “My grace is all you need.  My power works best in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:8)

Jesus sets a high standard for my conduct.  He tells me to forgive others who have hurt me. And I am to ask forgiveness for the things I have said and done to others.

As I see it, love doesn’t mean agreeing with everything my friend says.  It does mean treating him as a brother or sister in Christ.

Or, as a number of us were discussing this week, the great words of Jesus in Matthew 7:12: “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you. This is the essence of all that is taught in the law and the prophets.”

It would be wonderful if we Christians could take these words to heart and act on them.

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2 comments so far

  1. Linda M-N on

    Such timely thoughts, Bob.


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