Kingdom of God is BIGGER Than Your Political Party

A week has passed since the 2012 Presidential Election, and many (who voted like me) are still licking their wounds and awaiting armageddon.  OK. That may be a bit too strong, but that is what it has at times seemed like to speak with those who (like me) did not support the re-election of Barrack Obama.

I understand the disappointment, and even the concerns. But what troubles me, more than anything else, is when I hear Christians demonizing other people, especially other Christians,  just because they voted for Obama.  I do not want to minimize the passions. I just want us to regain our perspective.

Here is a penetrating question posed by one writer:

If I feel more of a kindred solidarity with those who share my politics but not my faith than I feel with those who share my faith but not my politics, what does it say about me?

I find that question, which I read in piece by Scott Sauls in Redeemer City to City, to be an excellent perspective-shaping querry.

Sauls goes on, and profoundly answers his own question:

“… It suggests that I have sold out to Rome. I have rendered to God what belongs to Caesar, and to Caesar what belongs to God.”

Maybe you can’t bring yourself to agree with Sauls’ specific conclusion. But I hope you will find his prevailing premise resonates with you, as it does with me.  In short, if you find yourself more akin with folks who share your political persuasions than you do those who share your faith foundations, something is amiss.

So, if either of the following describes you:

  • You are struggling with resentment about the results of our recent election, or when you find yourself in the midst of people who voted for Obama
  • You are so elated that you find it difficult to refrain from gloating and you feel twinges of subtle delight for any opportunity you get to rub Obama’s re-election in the face of your more conservative colleagues

… let me encourage you to consider Sauls’ whole article: To My Elated & Despairing Post-Election Friends.

Here is what I have been reminding myself for the past week: God says, “I have set my King on Zion, my holy hill.” (Psalm 2.6)  That’s all I really need to know.

The Kingdom of Heaven is bigger than a political party.

Sailboat Spirituality

Do you sometimes have difficulty understanding or remembering who does what in our Spiritual maturation? We get that it is God who must make us alive to believe (regeneration), and that he gives us the gift of faith to believe, which leads to salvation (justification).  But then what?  Surely there is something we must do.  What about spiritual disciplines? But then, how does grace work? What does the Holy Spirit do?

I love the imagery Jared Wilson offers in his excellent book Gospel-Wakefulness:

As long as we are thinking of achieving the fruit of the Spirit by our own efforts to be more fruitful and joyful, we may be working in their direction, but we’re getting there by the sweat of our brow.  We’ve embraced rowboat spirituality.   But think of the obedient work of the Christian life like a sailboat.  There are lots of things to do on a sailboat. Sailors don’t just sit there – at least, not for too long.  There are lots of working parts on a sailboat and lots of things to pay attention to. But none of those things make the boat go.  The boat doesn’t go unless the wind catches the sail.

What we are picturing here is the work of the Spiritual Disciplines in conformity with the law of God found in Scriptures, not as the means of propulsion, but as the means of setting the conditions for Spiritual fertility. In obedience, we till the soil of our hearts so that they are more receptive for the planting and growth of the Word in our lives.  We obey both in response to the Spirit’s awakening us and in order to raise the sail for the Spirit’s movement.

“If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.” ~ Galatians 5.25