Jesus Said Not to Worry--That Includes Politics
It’s practically impossible to avoid hearing about the upcoming presidential election these days. Political talk is in the news, on social media, and in day-to-day conversations, and most of it is not very encouraging.
Many people are worrying about the outcome of this election. Christians are also not immune from worrying over who will be America’s next president.
I have came across articles recently from Christian writers in support of each candidate and also articles avidly against each candidate. Then, of course, there are those who bemoan the fact that there just doesn’t seem to be any good options in this election.
What do we do as Christians with all this uncertainty that can lead to so much worry and anxiety?
Jesse Carey of Relevant has some suggestions in his article “Jesus Never Worried about Politics.”
It’s easy to think that there has never been a more tumultuous political climate than today’s. And while we have certainly seen some unprecedented events in the 2016 election cycle, it may encourage us to remember that Jesus also lived in an incredibly tumultuous political environment.
The Romans were bearing down hard on the Jewish people, and most Jews, instead of recognizing that Jesus was bringing a kingdom not of this world, assumed that he had come to overthrow the Roman government and establish an earthly kingdom.
We often fall into the same trap of thinking that God’s kingdom is inextricably tied to our earthly political system. What Jesus cares infinitely more about than our politics, however, is our hearts.
"Jesus wasn’t out for votes. He was out for hearts,” writes Carey. “Yes, He wanted social change; but for Him, that changed started when He upended how people thought about their neighbors, not just their rulers.”
This point of view--a biblical point of view--actually frees us up to not worry and instead to focus on living out our Christian faith.
After all, worry is detrimental to not only our own faith, but to serving others. Jesus had a lot to say about worry--namely, that we don’t need to do it because He cares for His children.
In Matthew 6 Jesus says: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?”
We must remind ourselves that this also applies to politics, and specifically to this November’s election. It would be great to have a Christian president, but as I wrote previously for Crosswalk.com, even a Christian president will not solve our problems and take away our worry.
Only Jesus can do that.
Let’s challenge ourselves today to broaden our perspectives so that we can see that God is not limited by our human politics, and His kingdom is being built regardless of who is wielding earthly power.
Photo courtesy: Thinkstockphotos.com
Publication date: August 17, 2016
Veronica Neffinger is the editor of Crosswalk.com