As evidenced by the losing candidate and his supporters this is a very divided nation. Race pitted against race. Religion against religion. Political party against political party. People are targeted because they wear a law enforcement uniform. They are targeted because they wear a mask or don't wear a mask.
Christians are accused of hatred because of their faith. Women are objectified and treated as lesser humans. The LGBTQ community reels from hatred and disdain. Blacks struggle in the face of racism. Muslims live in fear they will be profiled because of their religion. We all seem to fall into at least one category that we feel is being treated unfairly. For all the talk of tolerance, we have become an intolerant society. We can no longer sit and have a constructive conversation about topics and policies, because we begin to throw insults at anyone who sees or thinks differently than we do.
Current hot topics such as Covid, taxes, the economy, racial tensions are at the top of concerns. It has far less to do with the candidate than it does with the issues facing our country and the person we believe is best to tackle them. My vote one an easy one. Yours may not have been, but my guess is that like me your decision was against the policies of one party and for the policies of the other.
It’s sometimes difficult to separate your Christian beliefs from your political viewpoints, but you must remember the purpose of our government. And it is not the same as your purpose as a Christian.
Romans 13:4-5 ERV Rulers are God’s servants to help you. But if you do wrong, you have reason to be afraid. They have the power to punish, and they will use it. They are God’s servants to punish those who do wrong. So you must obey the government, not just because you might be punished, but because you know it is the right thing to do.
1 Peter 2:13-14 ERV Be willing to serve the people who have authority in this world. Do this for the Lord. Obey the king, the highest authority. And obey the leaders who are sent by the king. They are sent to punish those who do wrong and to praise those who do good.
As Christians we must believe that our government is not under the same scriptural commands as we are.
Matthew 22:21 ERV They answered, “It is Caesar’s picture and Caesar’s name.” Then Jesus said to them, “Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.”
We are commanded to pour out love and strive for unity. That command is issued to Christians, not the government.
James 1:27 ERV The worship that God wants is this: caring for orphans or widows who need help and keeping yourself free from the world’s evil influence. This is the kind of worship that God accepts as pure and good.
Matthew 5:43-44 ERV “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies. Pray for those who treat you badly.
Matthew 22:37-40 ERV Jesus answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and most important command. And the second command is like the first: ‘Love your neighbor the same as you love yourself.’ All of the law and the writings of the prophets take their meaning from these two commands.”
A Prayer For Our Country By Dena Johnson Martin Crosswalk.com blogspot for Dena Johnson of Dena's Devos
*Scriptures added by me
Father God, we come to you utterly broken over the condition of our country. It is disheartening to see the division, the hatred, the intolerance. The violence is heart-breaking, and we long for peace in this great country of ours.
We fall on our face before you, confessing our sins. We pray that we as Christians will humble ourselves and pray and seek your face and turn from our wicked ways, so you will hear from heaven and will forgive our sins and restore our land.
2 Chronicles 7:14 ERV and if my people who are called by my name become humble and pray, and look for me, and turn away from their evil ways, then I will hear them from heaven. I will forgive their sin and heal their land.
We are in desperate need of your healing power and your grace.
As Christians, we see our country turning further from you each day. People no longer reverence you, call on you. We shut you out of our public lives. Even more discouraging is how we shut you out of our private lives. We no longer desire to walk according to your ways, your truth.
Help us remember the message of the cross is foolish to those who do not believe! But we who are being saved know it is the very power of God.
1 Corinthians 1:18 ERV The teaching about the cross seems foolish to those who are lost. But to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
Help us remember we cannot expect those who do not know you to understand why we live the way we do. Help us remember we cannot expect this world to live by the same holy standards we strive to live by.
As this world grows darker and more opposed to the things of God, I pray you would let our light shine brighter. May we be a beacon shining brightly in this country!
Matthew 5:14-16 ERV “You are the light that shines for the world to see. You are like a city built on a hill that cannot be hidden. People don’t hide a lamp under a bowl. They put it on a lampstand. Then the light shines for everyone in the house. In the same way, you should be a light for other people. Live so that they will see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.
May we prove ourselves by our purity, our understanding, our patience, our kindness, by the Holy Spirit within us, and by our sincere love. May others see you shining through us.
2 Corinthians 6:6 ERV We show that we are God’s servants by our pure lives, by our understanding, by our patience, and by our kindness. We show it by the Holy Spirit, by genuine love,
As you look down on this great country and the mess we have created, we ask that you would raise up a remnant of faithful followers who seek you above all else, whose hearts are pure and whose hands are clean. May we have a single-minded devotion to you, desiring to know you and walk in obedience above all else.
We pray this remnant of faithful believers will have faith to move mountains.
Matthew 17:20 ERV Jesus answered, “You were not able to make the demon go out, because your faith is too small. Believe me when I tell you, if your faith is only as big as a mustard seed you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. You will be able to do anything.”
May our faith in the face of an increasingly dark world astound others as we see you move in our lives, providing for our needs as only you can, doing miracles in our midst. And may we never steal your glory, but always use your supernatural work in our lives to point the world back to you, to give you the glory you so deserve.
An important decision has been made this last week. We don’t really know what the president-elect will do once in office. Uncertainty abounds, and fear is rampant. We pray you will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.
Isaiah 26:3 ERV God, you give true peace to people who depend on you, to those who trust in you.
Help us remember that no matter who is in office, you still control the hearts of kings. Nothing can touch us that is not sifted through your hands. You are Sovereign, Lord!
Our future is in your hands, and we trust you. We trust you to be our guide as we navigate the tumultuous waters of this world. We trust you to bring good out of all things, even the painful, ugly circumstances. We trust that in your kindness you have called us to share in your eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus, and that after we have suffered a little while, you will restore, support, and strengthen us. You will place us on a firm foundation.
1 Peter 5:10 ERV Yes, you will suffer for a short time. But after that, God will make everything right. He will make you strong. He will support you and keep you from falling. He is the God who gives all grace. He chose you to share in his glory in Christ. That glory will continue forever.
We thank you that even though we are living in uncertain times, we can know that our future with you is secure.
Thank you, Lord, for the privilege of living in this great country where we have freedom to openly worship you. May we never take that privilege for granted, but always guard it and treasure it. May we not live in apathy to you, but live in awe of your love and forgiveness freely poured out for us. Allow our light to shine brightly as our hearts turn to you.
In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.