It has been a long night for America. All across the country millions watched their live feeds anxiously, waiting to find out who would become America’s next president. We have all woken up to a new day, a new president, and many questions. What now? What follows is a checklist for Christians to consider as they engage their neighbors, coworkers, friends, and classmates today. This is by no means comprehensive, but it’s a start. Before posting, tweeting, debating, crying, or clapping, ask yourself these questions:
- Have I prayed for America’s leaders? Regardless of who you voted for, Scripture calls us—commands us—to pray for our country’s leaders. In fact, this is the most important thing we can do right now. 1 Timothy 2:1-3 says, “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior.” You may not agree with his views, you may not like him, or you might love him. Nevertheless, Christians are to pray for the president, Senate, and the House—praying specifically for their salvation and for them to not hinder the spread of the gospel. If you think this difficult to do, remember that there are brothers and sisters in other places of the world who are praying for the very leaders who are trying to kill them.
- Have I prayed for my neighbor’s salvation? Driving out of your cul-de-sac this morning, you’ll be passing the houses of Trump-voters, Clinton-voters, Independent-voters, and Non-voters. When you get to work, you’ll be reading the tweets and posts of friends and family from all over the country. But more than praying for their political views have you prayed for their salvation? In those houses that you passed on your way to work and the people you see posting on Facebook and Twitter are people who will spend an eternity in separation from God if they don’t know Jesus Christ. Pray for them to know the one true God.
- Have I talked about what’s most important? Sure…politics is important. But is it the most important? No. Even more important than people knowing who you voted for or what your political affiliation is, we must make our faith in Christ known. Many, many political conversations will take place today. Remember, however, that the president only leads for the next four to eight years—a mere vapor in the grand scheme of world history. Jesus Christ, on the other hand, reigns forever. True evangelicals, then, should saturate and salt their conversations with the evangel—the good news. Try to make it your goal to talk about your perfect and eternal Divine Savior and King more than you talk about fallen and temporary human politicians.
- Have I reminded myself that I am a citizen of the Kingdom to come? People responded to the results in many different ways. Some said, “Whew! Now I can relax!” Others said, “Whoa! Now I have move to Canada!” But the reality is that America is not really our home. Regardless who sits in the White House, ultimately, we are only passing through. We are exiles in America—mere sojourners. Be careful of celebrating or disparaging the results too much. Last night might have been a victory for you or it might have been a loss. But truth be told, neither Mr. Trump nor Mrs. Clinton can make America a more comfortable home for believers. We’re not looking for a comfortable earthly home anyway…we’re moving on to a heavenly country.
- Have I reminded myself that I must trust in Christ alone? Doubtless, there are a multitude of emotions out there today. Some put there trust in Hillary and she failed. Some have put their trust in Trump and he will fail. Neither Trump nor Hillary can bring peace to our restless souls. Only Jesus can do that. Though most Christians readily acknowledge that truth with their mouths, few acknowledge it with their heart. Therefore, now that the election’s over, take a deep breath and remember, “there is one political maxim which comforts [us]: ‘The Lord reigns’” (John Newton).
Christians, there is much to be done. And our work is not ultimately political, but spiritual. Don’t miss out on the opportunities to proclaim Christ today. The world needs a Savior…not a president.