I know this season of our lives is technically over (for now), but these two words still strike fear and trepidation in many of our heart.
Know what they are?
I know, I know. Terrifying, right?
I love that we live in a country where every citizen gets the right to vote.
My hope and prayer for all of us is that we would register to vote and seize every opportunity to vote – it’s a chance to stand for something you believe in, and it’s a privilege. I know many people who live in countries where they do not have a voice in how they are governed, and I know it’s an amazing privilege to have the liberties we have.
But here’s the deal: These elections come and go, and there are so many of us who get stressed out about what will happen because of an election. At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself a simple question:
Am I going to let whatever’s going on in the world define the agenda by which I live my life, or am I actually going to live differently?
It’s all too easy to get sucked into the chaos that popular culture and media generate. Often, that’s exactly what popular news sources and culture creators want to do—create chaos! The person who gets others the most worked up wields the greatest power in society, because when we yield ourselves to chaos, we hand over control of our reactions.
But as followers of Jesus, we know we need to look at all the goings-on of earth from a spiritual perspective—right? We know that the only one who should speak into our choices with that level of authority is the Lord.
And I also know it’s easier said than done to retrain ourselves in the way we look at things. When it comes down to it, how do we determine not only who we vote for, but how we engage super polarizing social and cultural issues? Especially in the electric climate generated by an election, it’s important we get this right.
The answer is so much simpler than we think it is.
Here’s the key: Jesus was always interested more in transforming the world than being told by other people He was right. And Jesus’s way of transforming the world is transforming one person at a time.
More good news for us: Jesus’s ethics make a really direct translation into our socio-political climate.
Jesus went through some of the exact same things that we are experiencing in our country today.
Politically, things were super complicated. The Roman Empire, the Jewish government, the competing nations around them. They all wanted to pull Jesus into their own agenda; the agenda of empire, the agenda of these different political parties within that culture.
But what I love about Jesus is he listened. He never got sucked into any of the chaos, because he realized there was a much bigger agenda at hand: The agenda of Heaven.
We all hold our political views. And I think we should. It’s totally necessary if we want to participate in the democratic process.
But raise your hand if you want to see Heaven touch earth! I know I do!
If you want to see the world changed from the inside out, one person at a time, I want to encourage you today to prevent any political party from setting your agenda because your agenda is set by the Kingdom of God.
When the agendas of the world get in the way of the agenda of Jesus, we choose Jesus every single step of the way.
I know it’s hard to believe in the weeks following a major election, but in a few more years, new battle lines will be drawn. New agendas will be crafted and pushed. And new people will be elected.
But you know what? There’s no election going on in Heaven. Jesus is always the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. And he is in the business of transforming the world, through his people choosing to engage with the people around them, at their places of pain. He wants to use us to change the world.
So instead of arguing about politics, let’s start to talk about the plan of Jesus and His Kingdom, and how we fit into it. As we explore that, we will discover what his eternal agenda truly is, and how we can be the change the world desperately needs.
Daniel Fusco, author of Upward, Inward, Outward, is the pastor of Crossroads Community Church (Vancouver, Wash., and Portland, Ore.), and hosts TV show Real with Daniel Fusco on the Hillsong Channel. Find him at Danielfusco.com and follow him on Facebook and Twitter: @danielfusco