What I Learned from the Presidential Debate
If you watched the debate last week, you likely came away feeling anything but positive about the state of politics no matter which side of the fence you're on. And if you read articles or listened to commentary on said debate, you may have felt your blood pressure rise just a wee bit. (Or maybe it was just me?! No, probably not...)

I'm not here to debate policies or defend either of the candidates, but since I've been pondering a few thoughts related to the latest theatrics from Washington, I figured I'd share.

1. Where does your hope lie? My friend, if you're placing your hope and trust in whether [insert candidate's name here] gets elected, I'm afraid you will be severely disenchanted. I have no insight into which candidate will claim victory—but I do know that no matter which party has the White House come November 4, 5, or 6 (or whatever date all the votes are finally counted), that individual will always disappoint. He's human, after all (as are all of his advisors), and history shows even the best leaders make mistakes—whether purposefully or unintentionally.

2. With whose purposes do you align? If your plans and dreams hinge on whether a certain political platform receives a "mandate," again...I'm afraid you'll be disappointed. For those who call themselves Christians, we are to be about our Father's business. "But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:33). Policies may change; executive orders can be overturned. But right and wrong will NOT be changed, no matter how would-be wordsmiths try to change definitions. In unsettled times, it's comforting to know that "the plans of the Lord stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations" (Psalm 33:11). God's purposes are the only ones that will never be thwarted—and since He is sovereign, we can trust that He will make all things right in His perfect timing.

3. Where do YOU stand on the REAL issue? Ultimately, this world is passing away...and not because of climate change! The real issue is, do you have a relationship with Jesus? Where will you spend eternity? It's tempting to think we're better than [insert politician we aren't voting for here] because we believe this, or we would "never" do or say that, but when all is stripped away—we've all sinned. We are all in desperate need of a Savior. Are we willing to admit we've gone against a holy God? Do we see our transgressions for what they are—the reason Jesus suffered and died on the cross?

Our country is facing desperate times. Wildfires and wild behavior rage out of control. Media outlets by and large opt for click-bait headlines over the hard work of investigative journalism. Civil discourse has been trampled and forgotten. We can shake our heads. We can shake our fists. Or we can fall on our knees, praying first of all for our own hearts to be made pure before the God who holds all people accountable.

And then we can pray, pray, pray for our nation—its people AND its leaders.

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