Well, here we are again. Republicans vs. Democrats. More name calling, blame casting, finger pointing, on and on, etc. Both sides remain in a stalemate and the country remains in a shut down. We are a little over 24 hours from hitting the debt ceiling and from having things go from bad to worse. National politics are extremely important and do effect our everyday lives. National media from both sides continue to portray the opposite side in the wrong light and move forward with their own agenda. What should our response be as believers in Christ? Our there lessons we can learn from our elected governed officials? Better yet, are there lessons our national leaders can learn from us?
The Bible is God's playbook for life. One book found in the OT in particular, I like to refer to as a Coach's handbook. The book has 31 chapters, 1 for each day of the month! Even Billy Graham said he read one chapter a day from this book so he would know how to treat his fellow man. The second greatest commandment, Jesus said, was to love your neighbor as yourself. If you have not guessed it yet, I am talking about the book of Proverbs. Proverbs is full of principles that man can follow which will allow him or her to gain wisdom in this life in relating to people who come from different backgrounds and perspectives.
Here are some words of wisdom that politicians and believers could both use:
Proverbs 3:29: Do not plan evil against your neighbor, who dwells trustingly beside you.
Proverbs 4:24: Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you.
Proverbs 11:12: Whoever belittles his neighbor lacks sense, but a man of understanding remains silent
Proverbs 14:34: Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.
Proverbs 24:17: Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles
Proverbs 24:28: Be not a witness against your neighbor without cause, and do not deceive with your lips.
Proverbs 27:1: Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.
30 years ago, we embodied these principles as a nation much more than we do today. The Bible and the name Jesus Christ both had more relevance. How nice it would be if we could return to our national roots.
Unfortunately, I think words from Proverbs 6 capture more where we find ourselves today:
"There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers."
Pray that our national leaders might look up for guidance so they can learn how to relate better to others down here. Even Jesus, when crucified, looked up in his spirit so that he could say this about those who were crucifying him, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."