(An unnecessarily controversial post that I wrote 2 years ago after the election. President Obama visited NC State yesterday and it reminded me of why it is important to put our hope in our Redeemer and not our government.)
Barack Obama is my president. I don’t say this with hesitation. I don’t whisper it under my breath. It’s just a fact.
I have felt this underlining tension among fellow conservatives lately. Underlining? Who am I kidding? More like this intense outcry from the conservative right (often, the far right) every time our president even breathes. This becomes increasingly obvious when such overreaching cries come from our side of the park when the president decides to do something as innocent as speak into the minds of young children during a public school forum. Are you serious? I could not believe the outrage at something so simple, something that had the potential to be so beneficial. This kind of reaction reflects the attitudes of such liberals during the Bush years. To both fringes of the political landscape, the other side can do no good and their own can do no wrong. See, and you thought you had nothing in common.
I understand the frustration. There is many issues that we can discuss, debate and fight to change, as we should. That however, does not change the fact that Barack Obama is still our president.
Let me reiterate. Barack Obama is my president. Jesus Christ is my Lord. I do not rest my hope for the cures of hunger, peace and happiness in the government. I put it in my Savior. No, I’m not naive, nor am I glossing over obvious differences conservatives have with this administration. I’m simply stating what should be our hope.
See, I prayed a simple prayer during the election (the election that went on, and on, and on). It was this: “Lord, put into office who YOU want”. Simple. I didn’t stress, I didn’t worry. In fact when I woke up on Nov. 5th, I didn’t feel the slightest bit of hesitation or anxiety. Why? Because of Who is in control. If we believe that God is in control, and we ask Him to place in office who He desires, then by way of deduction we must conclude that God placed Barack Obama in office for His glory, for His reasons.
As I was reading Proverbs this morning, I was reminded of this fact. God is in control. Always. There’s never been a time in my life where He wasn’t. He doesn’t sleep. He needs no rest. He never takes a siesta.
-Prov. 21:1 says “The king’s (president’s) heart is like channels of water in the hand of the Lord; He turns it wherever He wishes.” I don’t know about your particular version, but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t say the ‘conservative/republican’s heart is like channels of water…’. No, it says the king’s. Any king. Any ruler. Any president. God brings them to leadership, and uses them for His glory.
– Prov. 16:9: “The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” President Obama may be the leader of the free world, but God directs his steps. He guides his heart like channels of water. It’s impossible for any president or leader to do anything that is not in God’s ultimate plan for this world and that He can not use for His glory. The word that we’re looking for is sovereignty. Too often we ascribe far too much of it to political leaders and far too little to the God who rules.
I know what you’re thinking. What about abortion? What about gay marriage? Yes, those issues are very important. But let’s shoot straight, brass tacks-it. We’ve had a conservative leader in the White House for 8 years. Abortion statistics have not diminished and it’s no longer uncommon to hear another state has adopted policies for same-sex marriages.
What our country desperately needs is not another conservative(or liberal)leader. What our country needs is for the church to awaken to the reality that WE have been put on this world to be the change agents. The church is the only organization on this planet that has been equipped through our very identity (the cross) to impact the world for change and bring people of all different cultures and walks of life to peace through Jesus Christ. We have been given the ministry of reconciliation through the Gospel: “…in Christ God was reconciling the world to himslef, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us.” (II Cor. 5:19-20) No political group can claim that. We must never forget that Christ has sent us to be light and salt(John 17:18). Politics are important and powerful, but pale in comparison to the mission the church has been given.
What you and I must commit to do is to pray for our president. Pray that God would open His eyes to his truth. Pray that God would use his administration to glorify Himself. Pray that God would use this presidential term to draw the church out of our buildings and into the lives of the lost, desperately burdened to draw them to Christ.
“Our God is mighty to save…He has conquered the grave!”
Now that’s change we can believe in.