I have had something stirring in my heart and so today’s is a little longer…less pictures…more words…but from my heart <3
One of the realities of the concept that a group of people would all come together under one, real or implied, banner and share their collective ideas and options and opinions and then take a vote and whatever/whoever has the most votes wins is this…
somebody or, more likely, somebodies are not going to get their way.
Whether it is a family of five deciding where to go for dinner…or a committee at church deciding how to handle the latest surge in attendance….or a country deciding who will lead it.
Part of the group is going to be very happy….part of the group is going to be OK…and part of the group is going to be somewhere between disappointed and miserable.
Democracy is typically only great for the winning side of the majority vote.
One of the frustrating turn of events in this democracy, for those of us who use God’s Word as the standard for our moral, ethical and spiritual principles, is that we are quite aware that we are not the majority.
I would suppose we never were, but we lived in a cultural climate where we at least perceived we were.
During my most recent visit with the boys, Rachel suggested that the two older ones pick out a game to play with Lola.
As in one.
If you have ever dealt with children, you can pretty much imagine what happened at that point…
I could hear them all the way down the stairs and all the way back up, jostling to get to me first.
Graham chose a Wild Kratts game and Emmy chose Paw Patrol.
As Rachel and Joel faded off to another room, smiling smugly…I grabbed my spiritual whistle and emotional referee cap and entered in to the ensuing fray that included…
<3 Deciding which game to play first
<3 Deciding who gets to be which character first
<3 Deciding who gets to go first
<3 Deciding that Emmett, at three years old, has no idea how to play either game and made both games pretty much a living …you know….heck….
I found myself championing for peaceful negotiations, suggesting compromises and trying to enforce enough rules that the game made sense for Graham; while extending enough grace that Emmy could feel like he had participated without causing us to want to lock him in the garage.
It was an incredible workout for all of us…physically, emotionally and spiritually….but we got through it…stronger…mostly unharmed…and gaining more than we would have if we had all agreed on one game and played it without incident.
It wasn’t about the game at all…
not about gathering animal shields with the Wild Kratts …
nor bones with the Paw Patrol.
It was about us, working through it, figuring out how to get along while taking turns and making room for each other’s strengths and weaknesses.
I have to remind myself that as far as politics and laws and agendas go…there is no way we will ever…all of us…come to 100% agreement and be totally happy with how this country is run and managed.
Even if you were to force “agreement” on us, in our minds and hearts…we would still believe what we believe….
It’s what each of us do, in the context of this country’s “democracy” that matters.
For me, as a follower of Christ, it is how I choose to live and love and work and serve …. under the Authority of Christ by living under the authority of the nation in which He has placed me.
We live in confusing times and it is okay to be confused.
Much of what we are seeing and hearing doesn’t make sense because much is not grounded in truth or the Truth.
First of all then, I urge, that petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgiving be offered on behalf of all men, for kings and for all those in authority, so that we may lead tranquil and quiet lives in all godliness and dignity. This is good and pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-3 Berean Study Bible
and from Paul, who was speaking under Roman rule…
Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which is from God. The authorities that exist have been appointed by God. Consequently the one who resists authority is opposing what God has set in place, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. Romans 13:1-2 Berean Study Bible
and for the freedom we have in Christ…we are always free…no matter what government authority we are under…
Live in freedom, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. Treat everyone with high regard: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king. 1 Peter 2:16-17
and then there are the words of Jesus Himself to put these human games of politics and commerce…of kingdoms and democracies and the rise and fall of civilizations into proper perspective…
Jesus said, “My Kingdom is not of this world. If it were; My servants would fight to prevent My arrest by the Jews. But now, My Kingdom is not of this realm.” John 18:36
While we live out our daily lives in the United States of America, under whatever authority gets voted in by the most people…we wait for the coming of a Kingdom that is not of this world.
It sounds crazy to those who don’t know Him.
It is everything to us who do.
And it is our prayer for all to have the opportunity to receive Him as Lord and Savior, no matter where they live on this globe.
So while we wait: let’s wait well.
Let’s honor our King in the government under which we live; while we look, with anticipation, for His Return.
God bless each of you as you honor Him first and foremost in all things <3