Thoughts of a messed up Christian saved by God's grace

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Ronnie Smith, Davey Blackburn, and the Christian voter

   I am currently reading No God But One: Allah or Jesus? by Nabeel Qureshi. He related the story of a missionary I was not familiar with. Ronnie Smith was a young school teacher who felt called to go to Libya as a teacher/ missionary, knowing the dangers of being a Christian in a Muslim country. Because Jesus was willing to die for those who sinned against Him, Ronnie believed that  following Jesus meant being willing to risk even his life to serve those who may be his enemies. On December 5, 2013, he was mowed down with guns and died. His wife published an awesome letter forgiving his attackers at RonnieSmithLibya.com.

  In November of last year, Amanda Blackburn was shot and killed during a home invasion in Indianapolis. She was the wife of a young pastor and was 12 weeks pregnant. Her husband made news lately with his declaration that he has forgiven his wife's killers and would like to share the Gospel with them.

  I think on these stories and am in awe... and guilt. Could I go to another country where I know I'd be risking my life to even be there as a Christian? If someone murdered a loved one, could I forgive them and want to share the Gospel with them?

   As we go through the messiest and most bizarre election I have seen in my life, something has been brewing beneath the surface of my thinking and emotions........ and it has been coming to the surface lately.

    The Democrats have as their candidate one of the most corrupt American politicians alive. She is guilty of crimes that should land her in prison, not to mention her politics and morality, or lack of..... and yet millions of people - including Christians - will vote for her because party and what she stands for them is so important that they will overlook anything bad about her to make insure she gets in the White House.

   And the Republicans are no better. The people who have supported Trump all along are beyond my scope of understanding.......I can at least understand the reluctant voters who are voting for him because he is the lesser of two evils in their eyes..... I don't agree, and I cannot ignore his present and past policies and the kind of man he is. Sure, I am also worried about our country and freedoms if Hillary wins......... but I am worried about our country and freedoms if he wins.

  So what does voting for evil #1 or evil #2 have to do with Davey Blackburn or Ronnie Smith? I am so glad you asked......

   These two men get it - well, Ronnie is past tense - but wow.....what models of Christianity. One man gave his life, and was willing to do so. The other man has forgiven his wife and baby's killers....... and wants to share the Gospel with them. He wants them to be Christians......he wants them to be able to go to Heaven, for that is what would happen if they listened to him and became Christians.

  And then there is us.....the American Christian voters. Could it possibly be that we have our priorities out of whack? We are so concerned with our rights, freedoms, and politics that we vote for candidates that no Christian worth their salt should vote for........ just to stop the opposite party from winning and putting legislation through that we don't want. Is serving God more important, or are our rights, freedoms, and laws more important?

Gun rights


Gay marriage/gay rights

Supreme court justices

Religious freedoms



    If we are so concerned with our rights that we will vote for the devil himself to stop the other party from winning and infringing on our rights, how could we ever be a Ronnie Smith and give up not only our rights and freedoms, but our lives? If we are so obsessed with getting our candidate in that we will argue and debate angrily with people who oppose our candidate, could we ever be a Davey Blackburn and forgive a loved one's killers and desire to share the Gospel with them?

  If we are so angry that people won't vote for and support Ted Cruz, Donald Trump, Marco Rubio, or others....... if we are so angry that people are voting for and supporting Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump, then how on earth are we being the Christians that we should be?

  Are we too addicted to our freedoms and comforts to be the kind of Christians that we should be? Have we put our desire to keep our gun rights, to not have to our rights infringed on by gay rights, to see the right kind of Supreme Court justices on the bench above being a Christian? Have we turned our freedoms and rights into idols?

   I was recently berated for not supporting DT by one of his biggest cheerleaders. This young man pointed out we have to have him to stop illegal immigration, for the safety of my beautiful (his word) nieces and nephews could be at risk. He said I should PRAY, PRAY, PRAY that Donald Trump wins to protect us from illegal immigrants........ as if that takes precedence over my doing the right thing......as if Donald Trump is our hope instead of God.......as if immigration is more important than Biblical and Christian values and morals.

   Have we forgotten that this world isn't our home..... no, not even America. If we are following and serving Jesus, our home is in Heaven. Life isn't supposed to be perfect here. Have we forgotten that we are to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Jesus? To love our enemies, be in the world but not of it..... and so forth?

  I had forgotten all of that. I wanted so badly for a true conservative to win  this time so Hillary Clinton wouldn't win and that we could preserve our country and freedoms.

   But you know what? Ted Cruz is just a man..... a very decent and godly man...... but just a man. My hope shouldn't be in him, but in God. And no matter what happens in this election, no matter what happens to our country and freedoms, God will still be on His throne. The Church will survive even if America doesn't survive a Trump or Hillary presidency.

   And shouldn't that be our main concern - not that our country survives, but that the Church and our faith survives? It was God's will that Ronnie Smith give his life in Libya......what if it is God's will for us to lose even more freedoms and rights in this country we call home? What is more important: who is president, or our faith and doing the right thing? What if the revival we want in America can only come under a Hillary Clinton presidency? What if God's answer to our prayers for revival is.......Hillary Clinton.

  To vote for Donald Trump, ignoring or overlooking all of the reasons a Christian should not, is putting politics, country, and freedoms above God.

  But to worry so much and have so much anger towards Trump and Hillary supporters for helping to bring the further destruction of our freedoms and country is also putting politics, country, and freedoms above God.

  We may be called upon to some day give our life for God.....and if we can't even surrender our freedoms, rights, and country to God......how will we ever truly surrender and give up our lives to do the right thing?

  I am still not voting for either candidate, but I am trying to dial it back. It is just as wrong to have the wrong attitudes and so much anger and worry over this election than it is to vote against conscience.

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