Monday, October 22, 2007

Who has ultimate authority?

I've been seeing a lot of posts in the blog world and comments in the news regarding the statements made by James Dobson regarding the Rebulican candidates and his choice to possibly vote for a third party candidate. If you are not aware of this statement, you can read the transcript from Dobson's appearance on Hannity & Colmes here.

I was originally not going to get into this, but the Lord has laid it on my heart to speak up. I know many of my friends will not agree with me and I respect that. I totally understand where they are coming from and until recently I thought the same way.

I have to go out on a limb here though and say that I support James Dobson in his choice. Here is why:

Being Pro-Life is a very important issue in my life. I will be the first to agree that we can not legislate morality, only a change in the hearts of Americans will change our laws and more importantly the actions of our nation. However, I can not in good conscience support someone who is not actively pro-life.

Now I know many will say you must vote for the "lesser of two evils" because if we throw our votes to a third-party candidate we are giving the election to the worse of the two. I have always thought this way and agreed 100%.

However, the Lord has been teaching me something lately and it has come up too many times in too many situations in the past days for me to ignore any longer or for me to keep to myself.

I have made a decision to give up trying to control my life. It is all an illusion anyway. Only God can do that. Therefore, I've committed to trust Him in everything I do. If I have made a commitment to value human life, to oppose abortion - how can I then compromise and vote for someone who does not give the same value to human life?

Yes I know that means Hilary Clinton could very well win the election and I would NOT want her as the president of my country. However, by voting for someone who is not actively pro-life, am I not telling God that I don't trust Him, that I know better than he does? That I'll commit myself to something, but only if it makes sense to me. As soon as I feel things may not be going the way I think they should be going, I'll falter and do what I think is best. What do I really know compared to God?

Is my God really not big enough to ensure a third party candidate wins if that is what He chooses? And if Hilary does win, does that mean God is no longer in control? (Maybe Hilary in power is what we complacent Christians in this country need to wake us up and cause us to take a stand for our God!)

Last night in my house church we watched chapter 19 of The Gospel of John with our kids. One part of the scene really stood out to us adults and we talked to our kids about it.

Jesus has been brought before Pilate who is questioning him. Jesus is not responding so Pilate tells him "Don't you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?"

Jesus answered, "You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above."

(John 19:10-11)

God is in control, even when it appears that things are out of control. I have to trust that in the end, He is the one who gives the ultimate authority. I may not always understand it, but I serve a God who is all-powerful. I don't need to try to take control, I don't need to compromise in order to "help" Him. He already has it all planned out.

This is not only a matter of me learning to trust God though. I want to raise my children to know the Lord, to love Him and to trust Him. I say I trust my Lord, I talk the talk to my children. Can I walk the walk as well? They watch what we do much more than they listen to us.

So this election, I will be taking a stand a bit different than I have in the past. There are certain issues in this election I feel the Lord has told me are critically important. These are things that are so important I am not to compromise my beliefs in order to try to control what happens in the election. I am to vote based on these issues and trust God to take care of the rest.


Rebecca said...

This is a fantastic post Ang! The person I am pulling for doesn't have the numbers - but at least he stands for what I believe is important - and if I throw away a vote on him at least I know I voted right...

Tanya said...

Curtis and I listen to a great radio talk show host, Dennis Prager. Here is the transcript from his show on October 8th. Its from his website
I like his approach - food for thought...

Dennis pleads with Evangelicals not to self destruct - 1
Monday, October 08, 2007 at 6:23 PM

Very, very tough issue, the question of Evangelicals and Rudy Giuliani, which of course transcends even Rudy Giuliani as such, because of the question of what does a religious person do on this Earth? That’s the question. And many of you, it’s truly divided. I get as much Evangelical mail saying I cannot possibly support someone who’s pro-choice as I get from people saying what is wrong with my fellow Evangelicals? Have they lost their minds? Are we going to reduce abortion if we get Hillary Clinton in the presidency? And that’s my question. That is one of my questions to the pro-life people out there. It’s not just Evangelicals, but they’re the most organized group and largest as such. Obviously, many Catholics and many other people.

And I ask you the question, A) on abortion, do you believe that the cause of abortion, of trying to abolish it or at lease minimize it, will be furthered more if Rudy Giuliani is president and appoints Supreme Court justices, or Hillary Clinton as president and appoints Supreme Court justices? The question is so obviously, the answer is so obvious that the question is rhetorical. Ted Olsen, who…is Ted Olsen pro-life? I think he is, but…and in any event, he is his judicial advisor. Unless you believe Rudy Giuliani is a liar, I mean, a deceitful man, it is clear that he would appoint justices who would be far, far better for every single cause that an Evangelical cares about than Hillary Clinton appointing those Supreme Court justices.

You see, here is my worry. My worry is people who say, and they say to me, and these are good people, and I honor these people, I have to answer to God for what I, how I vote. Agreed, for whatever you do, we have to, I agree with that, by the way, you have to answer to God. I couldn’t agree more. And God, I think God will say to you, though, I don’t understand when you had, if you had two pro-choice people, but one was so much closer to every other value you care about, why did you do, why did you work to defeat him? What will you answer to God then? What will you answer? Call me now. What will you answer to that question that I believe God would ask you? You had two pro-choice candidates in theory. But one was far closer to every other value, or virtually every other value that you hold, and you worked to defeat him so as to ensure that the candidate who held almost none of the values that you hold is elected. And what will you answer to God?

This is a public question to all religious people who could not vote for Rudy Giuliani. I didn’t endorse anybody, but that’s where the issue arises, so I’m talking about Giuliani. This is a Utopianism that is not right for religious people to hold. It is…you know, one of my favorite lines that I have come up with over the course of my years is God has common sense. God understands that we live in a compromised world. God understands that. As I pointed out to an Evangelical caller a couple of weeks ago, God uses King David, an adulterer-murderer, for His purposes. God could have said I can’t vote for King David, right? I mean, folks, I think we’ll have to argue in the final analysis that King David was a bigger sinner than Rudy Giuliani. That is a lesson that God can teach, that we use flawed individuals for the purposes of God, if you will. And I don’t mean it in some theological sense, but the moral purposes that God cares about. So I tell you, it’s…you see, you have to ask yourself, everybody does, is my vote a matter of pride? And there is a pride issue here. Now I’m going to vote for…you know, I can’t look myself in the mirror if I vote for somebody who was pro-choice.

And by the way, even in the pro-…what does that mean? He thinks that states should have the right to vote on it. That’s the best way to start abolishing abortion. That’s the irony. He doesn’t want the Supreme Court to decide. He’s far closer to pro-life than he is to pro-choice in practice. He’s just, he’s not prepared to ban it. But he’s prepared to allow states to ban it. Presidents don’t ban it anyway. Presidents appoint Supreme Court justices. That’s what they do. George Bush, Sr., was pro-life, and he gave us David Souter. It’s very frustrating. It’s very frustrating, because I expect so much from the Evangelical voter. I have said over and over and over and over, you are the backbone of my society’s values. You are. So this comes from admiration and affection.

This is…and write to me. I am going to read letters on the air. I’m going to have Evangelicals debate each other on this. I had a terrific Evangelical pastor write to me, oh, what was it about, it was such a powerful letter about…about sin and people…oh, yes, yes, he wrote, he said Corey Ten Boom is one of the great heroes or heroines of the Evangelicals, and of the world. She’s a Christian who saved Jews in the Holocaust at the risk of her life. She lied constantly to save those Jews. There are religious people who say look, you can’t lie. God…you’re going to have to face God and answer why you lied. Well, what about the Polish Catholic woman we had on this show who slept with a Nazi to save the seven Jews that she kept in her basement? The Nazi knew it. You don’t sleep with me, I send them to death camps. Think God is going to say to her why did you sleep with him? You aren’t married to him. Back in a moment.

Read Part II from his website.

Ang said...

I understand what Dennis is saying (I've always thought the exact same way in the past), however it really does not address where I am at currently.

First of all, I know that everyone is flawed and has sinned. Who I decide to vote for will not be based on who was the one who sinned the least. God looks at people's hearts, not their past. I will do the same to the best of my ability and with God's help as I pray through this issue.

Abortion is not the only issue I'm basing my vote on, it is just one of the major ones. I've prayed about this quite a bit and that is one issue the Lord is speaking to me about.

Also, I totally agree that God knows we live in a fallen world of compromise and I fully know He uses those who would surprise us at times to do His work. As I said, He may choose to allow Hilary to become President and use her to accomplish much in His church.

The point of my post is that we need to learn to truely trust God and give up control to Him and no longer keep taking it back from Him. For me, He has been very clear that how I vote in the upcoming election is one of those times I need to trust Him.

Dennis mentions the problem of pride being part of the reason people vote the way they do. For me, it would be pride getting in the way, if I compromised and voted on the "lesser of two evils" because for me it would be me taking over control again from the Lord.

For some that may not be the way He is speaking to them. My post was just food for thought regarding trusting God and why are we voting for someone who is not pro-life. I don't believe that He necessarily leads each of us to vote for the same person or for the same reasons. His ways are higher than mine and I'll never fully understand them, but I need to trust them.

Thanks for sharing. :)