A very dear friend lamented who on earth to look to as our role model in the current election. Certainly neither candidate comes close to being someone I would want my sons or daughter to emulate. I always believed our civic leaders should be above reproach. I grew up admiring the men and women who were the founders of our magnificent country and the most shining example of freedom for its constituents of any nation on earth.
Unfortunately, even our founding fathers were flawed. If they had had the partisan press corps determined to dig up all the dirt from their past, present, and future, their names would be as sullied as so many of the people who seek office in modern times. Few of us undergo that kind of scrutiny, and few of us would survive if we did. I sure wouldn't.
This is NOT a defense of the base character qualities we all see so clearly now in the presidential choices. It is a sad affirmation of the nature of unregenerate humankind.
"All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." Romans 3:23
Our role models should be Jesus first, and then if we are blessed, our parents, and then further blessed our pastors and Godly friends...but humans will ALWAYS fall short. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. ALL. Even the greatest leaders of our country from our past were flawed - Jefferson was a deist who denied Christ's divinity and wrote a 'bible' that to this day deludes people into believing you can approve of Jesus as a wise and great teacher, but somehow ignore His miracles or claims of divinity. Benjamin Franklin was a cad, with an illegitimate son. Alexander Hamilton had an affair to the approval of the husband who could then blackmail him. Andrew Jackson had a mistress, as did many of the men in office then...and probably now. Many were slave holders. Many hated the Native Americans and wanted to eradicate them.
Despicable qualities are sadly rampant in humanity, and in politics. I am very concerned about the choices this year as they seem to be the lowest of the low, but with the intense scrutiny of the press to divulge and destroy the candidate not of their party, I think we are increasingly privy to the failings of our leaders. My mantra for these days: Keep our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.
We are called upon to be discerning. We are required to make wise and Godly choices. We must weigh all the concerns that face us as Christians, citizens of a nation, and co-inhabitors of Earth in making decisions. It is an overwhelming task, particularly when the choices all seem so terrible.
When I was facing radiation, and the choice was between doing the breast reconstruction surgery before radiation and risk a 50% failure rate of the implant integrity, or do the surgery after radiation and face a much more invasive and difficult surgery that would require a several day hospital stay, I was paralyzed. Which to choose? Neither was desirable, and both were terrible. I could have chosen a third option -- skip radiation altogether and trust God to heal me. I felt tremendous guilt when others advised that, since I believed God gave human doctors the wisdom and skill that has undeniably helped heal many of cancer. Did I not trust God if I chose the path of the medical model? Was I less of a Christian? Was my faith shallow? Many suggested that was the case.
We all face a terrible choice in this election. I have said many times that I believe Godly, thoughtful people will come to different conclusions about how and what they should decide. Whether I vote Trump or write-in a candidate I know will lose (I will not ever vote for a candidate that supports abortion), my allegiance is to Jesus. He alone is who I model my life after, however imperfectly, and I will stand before Him one day and give an accounting of all my choices in life. I know I will disappoint Him in many things I have said and done, even with good intentions.
However, here is the hope and joy in the midst of this awfulness. No matter who I vote for, no matter what happens to my beloved country as a result of this election, my soul is safe. I will see God face to face when my body returns to dust because I have put my faith in Jesus, the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me, Jesus said. This is a choice that I can and have made with absolute unabashed no turning back, and thus at the end of this messy life, I will rest in perfection with Him.
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.