This election has become incredibly contentious, but, honestly, for good reason.
Both Democrats and Republicans find legitimate reasons to be fearful if the opposing candidate wins. Human rights and religious rights have been thrown into the ring for debate, creating serious cause for concern. Meanwhile, the candidates sometimes seem more concerned with personal feuds than answering difficult questions.
Regardless of the results, this is going to be a difficult election to process for a lot of people. Roughly half of the people we encounter will be exhaling with relief, while another half will be filled with anxious uncertainty of what the future holds.
Even on this editorial board, we have different expectations and hopes for this election.
However, even with the dark, looming cloud that hangs above Nov. 3, we have to consider how we’ll respond when Nov. 4 comes.
Ultimately, we have to be able to look toward our brothers and sisters with compassion and love, even in our disagreements.
Biblically, there isn’t a clear right or wrong candidate. The Bible doesn’t paint out which candidate to vote for. All of the candidates stand for some issues that are against and for biblical values. Going into this election, we’ve all attempted to use our best discernment, experience and values to cast our ballots.
“Politics is certainly an area where many of us see our inner pharisee surface, but being self-aware of this with the Holy Spirit’s help can move us towards compassion,” said Steve Austin, director of student programs.
The book of Romans speaks heavily into the idea of unity on tertiary disagreements, meaning arguments not pertaining to the primacy of the Gospel.
Romans 12:15 instructs us to be empathetic to our neighbors’ circumstances, while Romans 14:19 says to “make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.”
“Unity doesn't always equal agreement on every issue, but it does mean we hold fast to our enduring commitment to loving one another as Christ loves us,” said Jeff Aupperle, director of the CCO. “If we lead with love and mercy, we should be able to share our convictions and hold compassion for those with whom we disagree.”
The emotions you feel following the results of the election are valid. Please process things as you need. Seek counsel and encouragement from time in the word, worshipping or in the confidence of your mentors.
However, your reactions toward your neighbors must be rooted in the love that outpours from the love of Christ.
“The election results, whatever they are, will (affect) hard places that will challenge our commitments to one another such as bearing one (another’s) burdens,” Austin said.
We are still in this intentional community. We are still working to love, serve and learn from one another. Whether the candidate we’ve voted for has won or lost, there isn’t a hall pass on our duty to each other.
In the meantime, our encouragement is this: while we may feel dismayed at this moment, our omnipotent God is still sitting on the eternal throne. He will redeem our nation and world in its shortcomings, and in the meantime, we will obediently and humbly follow his instruction in service of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
This world will continue to disappoint us if we look to it for fulfillment. Jesus Christ will not.