How many times have you heard it said, that politics is a matter that should never be discussed in polite society?
I’d bet the number isn’t a small one.
Can I let you in on a little secret? I’ve never voted for any candidate running for any political office. In fact, I’ve never registered to do so, anywhere I’ve ever found myself.
You may be wondering why someone who’s never taken the time to cast a ballot, spends so very much energy, talking about the political process, and politicians.
To be fair, a great deal of what I cover, tends to be above the political fray. I spend time discussing things like character, and why the United States has the political system it does.
Even so, I delve into things political an awful lot, for a confirmed non-voter.
The answer is simple, I recognize that there will be government. I realize that I will be subject to that government’s whims.
Why don’t I vote then? Because I don’t believe it’s within my rights as a Christian, to cause others—even in an incidental fashion—to live under leaders I choose to put in power in a direct way.
That said, I recognize folks I come in contact with, either may not be Christians, or may not have the same scruples come to voting, I possess.
I don’t consider believers voting, to be a salvation issue. I can’t presume they’re hell-bound if they choose to participate in such activities.
Nonetheless, I’m not able to take such directions in good conscience.
That doesn’t mean, I can’t advise others, making it clear to them how things work, and for what, those for whom they might cast their lot, stand. And as one who attempts to act as I believe Jesus would expect me to, I consider myself to be in a solid position to do so—particularly where His followers are concerned.
For those reading who count themselves to be saved, I have a question. Would you accept the idea, that you had no right to speak your faith?
Remember, the question isn’t, “Do you feel qualified, or able to, share what you believe?”
If you answered, “Yes.” to the idea that you have no right to speak, where what you hold true is concerned, I honestly question at least, that you’ve seriously researched your position.
The admonition found in 1st Peter 3:15, ought to make it clear to you, that you must be willing to do that, no matter how bad at it, you think yourself to be.
By the same token, taking positions on things like politics, can and should be embraced through the lens of faith.
For my part, it’s not just acceptable that I discuss politics, it’s essential. Not doing so, means I leave others unaware of information I’ve acquired in the course of my trek on this planet, how my beliefs shape my viewpoint, and what I know or understand about those running for political office.
So you’ve heard vitriolic debate or discussion surrounding the subject, from those who seem otherwise, sane, rational, and kind individuals? Me too!
Can you imagine spouting hateful things about others? Can you picture yourself lacing your speech with profanity? No? Good!
The fact that there are people out there who’re willing to trash towns because their football (for Americans, read here, “soccer”) team, lost the match this evening, doesn’t indicate that all fans of that team, are either required, expected, or even in some way beholden, to act likewise.
That’s a good thing, since most of them don’t.
I imagine you could find those discussing knitting who would get into set-tos on the subject.
I’ve been informed there are people out there, willing to put a bullet in others, in order to come into possession of their shoes.
As well, there are those willing to kill, because people walked into their neighborhood wearing the wrong color, or an unsanctioned bandanna.
I sincerely hope you’re not among folks doing such things.
The point I’m making should be obvious, but allow me to spell it out.
The fact that there are people out there, who will mistreat others for even bad beliefs, by no means implies—much less openly states—that you must, or even should, do likewise.
In all you do, your conversation should be reasonable, rational, sane, and where possible, kind.
Let those of you who’re parents remember, there’re times when you must be harsh with your children.
Is your son playing in traffic? Then it’s probably time to take drastic action. Likewise if your young daughter is running with a sharp knife.
Just as in those situations, it may be necessary to be sterner than you really desire to be, when conversing on things like politics.
That shouldn’t mean, the rest of your existence must shift to match the tone of that moment.
I should also make a disclaimer here. Nobody is correct a hundred percent of the time. As such, to begin with, one should always take an attitude of humility, when discussing things—related to politics or not.
It’s also the case, that when one is told (and can determine it’s true) that one is incorrect about something, he or she should take whatever corrective action is possible.
To some extent, this can be avoided through the simple performance of due diligence. Even then, you will be wrong at times.
Here’s the thing though, you should always do your best, to act in ways that bring credit to you, your family, and most of all, if you’re a Christian, to Jesus called Christ, and God the Father.
So is it unreasonable to talk politics or religion? Not at all! Care should be taken with how you say what you say. Further, you should be at least as interested, if not more so, in ensuring what you say is true and correct, than when discussing any other thing. And remember, if what you seek to support politically isn’t in line with your spiritual understanding, you may want to reconsider who or what you’re putting weight behind. None of this means you should lash out, or be ill-behaved in stating your case.
Thanks for reading, and may your time be good.