I’m not going to make any friends with this post, and in fact, I’ll probably lose a few. I have a question. Is this really over? Have you thrown in the towel on this election? Would you have ever guessed we would be sitting here with these two as our final choices? As I have researched and considered both candidates, I came across an idea from scripture and it could change EVERYTHING about what happens in November.
“Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in Heaven.” Matthew 5:16
As an Evangelical here in America, this is a pretty high calling right now, isn’t it? In fact, I think this is the perfect time to be a follower of Jesus. I think our country needs us more than ever.
I could do it, you know. I could be part of the conservative voting block and say we need to stand behind Donald Trump. Or I could choose the edgy and hip Christian route and vote Democrat, because I’ve got a lot of edgy, hip people telling me life isn’t important enough and to vote for Mrs. Clinton. In fact, a Democratic SuperPac is shelling out millions upon millions to run a conservative campaign against Mr. Trump leveraging Mrs. Clinton as the candidate who most cares about life. It is a pretty good ad, actually, with a really good message. Am I a bit disenchanted with both of these options? You bet I am, and here’s why.
For all of the junk in the media you hear about Donald Trump, it’s often just a load of hogwash. My main issue with Mr. Trump becoming the President is he is an opportunist, not an idealist, and any outsider running for office needs to be more of the latter than the prior. In my opinion, an opportunist will leave us caught blowing in the wind. I’m not sure what tangibly Mr. Trump will be able to get done in the first four years, so his actual effectiveness might be the biggest issue. When Bill Clinton, another opportunist, was elected President in 1992, his Democratic Congress suddenly went whacko on him and for two years he was ineffective, so we replaced the Congress with Republicans and things began to get done. It will likely be worse for Mr. Trump because Congress already dislikes him. I don’t think our country can afford a brash leader right now, and let me also say how thankful I am for the class and poise of our current President. Regardless of how you may feel about his politics and ideals (I’m not a fan personally), he is absolutely respectful to everyone he speaks with. He never once has embarrassed us on a public stage. I appreciate this side of him.
Regarding Mrs. Clinton, I have to somewhat judge her by the sins of her husband in one respect. The last Clinton White House turned us into a joke internationally, with scandal after scandal, including a sitting President committing perjury. She is often abrasive and more of a divider than any candidate I’ve ever seen, outside of Donald Trump! What an election! Anyway, the biggest issue with Mrs. Clinton is she is absolutely pro-choice and has been in cahoots with Planned Parenthood since she could spell Chelsea. She is the antithesis of pro-life, and I don’t trust anyone who would support the genocide of unborn children. She also failed badly with her Healthcare Plan when Bill first took office, and since we need a new National Health Care Plan, we are basically up a creek. Sure, she has grown as a politician, but we all know what we are getting with the former First Lady, and I can’t imagine what Planned Parenthood will look like in four years with Hillary Clinton as President. I also think twenty-four years as a Washington insider is plenty. We need new ideas and a change in culture, and she gives us neither. Trump is the candidate of ideas, but frankly he isn’t the guy for me.
I haven’t, however, given up hope. My top choice when all of this began was Ben Carson, but he lost his tiny lead over Trump in October and went straight downhill from there. We can talk about Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Candidate, who is pro-choice, yet fiscally responsible. I’d be far more interested in a pro-life candidate who passionately wants to help the poor, protect our country, and bring us some pretty great new ideas to move us forward. Instead, I’m left scratching my head.
Neither Donald nor Hillary is my ideal, especially given some of my studies throughout the Old Testament. Any citizen of this great country would want America to prosper and to be a blessed Nation. As a follower of Jesus, I know God honored Israel when they followed him closely, and when their leaders were passionate about their love for God. When David was King, Israel had God’s blessing upon them and they entered a time of victory in war and plenty in resources. Its people were well cared for by God, and much of this had to do with their leader. Question: would you prefer a President who gets humbly on his knees before the one true God daily and asks him to bless this nation and to help us love him and each other? Or do you want someone who is going to rely on themselves and their cabinet to be successful? Isn’t that we we’ve been doing anyway? Haven’t we already gone down this road?
So, where do we go from here? As Evangelicals, we have a calling on each of our lives –
Matthew 5:16 says “In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
How do we let our lights shine in a tough time in our country? How could this work? I mean, seriously? The truth is I’m just some guy in Brentwood, New Hampshire who wrote a book and has some ideas. What can I do? How can I change the course of the 2016 Presidential Election? Isn’t it already too late? No. It’s not, and here’s why.
On June 21st five hundred Evangelical Leaders will be meeting with Donald Trump in New York. Obviously, they are being brought in to get their vote. In 2004 Karl Rove basically won the election for George Bush over John Kerry by uniting the churches and getting them a) scared of Kerry as an elitist and liberal and b) to vote for their current President because they could relate to his values. It worked and was a massive shock to all of the networks, so much so that even Fox News had to change their graphic at the last second to announce Bush not Kerry as POTUS.
These five hundred Evangelical Leaders need to make a decision, and they need to do it in New York. They need to stay in the room and get on the phone until they have their candidate. They need to get confirmation he is all in and will go for it. The Evangelical Leaders then create a new party, hire the best in the business to run the campaign and then they get to work. How does this group of leaders make it happen?
First, they bring in the best to run his campaign. I’d get Karl Rove and a Newt Gingrich out of mothballs, but I’d find a campaign manager without such long term ties to the Republicans. We need a maverick in the true sense of the word, someone incredibly smart who is one step ahead of everyone else. I don’t have a name right now, but I will honestly look and see who the best might be.
The five hundred Evangelical leaders need to get work, which starts with support from other leaders they’re connected with, their respective ministries, and they need to be fast and effective. There is almost no chance to get the candidate on all of the ballots, so America will need to prepare for their first write in candidate, which in this day and age should actually work. Still, they would have to get an army of lawyers ready to get them on the ballot in each state if it is at all possible. Regardless, with the Evangelicals united, the next step is to build the social media campaign and do it better than anyone else has done it before. First, you appoint state leaders, next the county leaders, then neighborhood leaders and create a true workflow through social media accounts. Work between Youtube, FB, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn and get the word out asap. The campaign manager and his staff create logos, updates, and each state leader reworks them to fit in the best within their culture. I’ve lived in these places, so trust me the message you send to Brentwood, New Hampshire is different than what you send to Jackson, Tennessee, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida. They would use their voices in social media to supply the most energetic and optimistic posts possible. Don’t we often get our news through social media anyway? Why not use this to leverage the campaign of the candidate?
Everything about the campaign is grass roots. Everything. It’s neighbors talking to neighbors, creating community service days sponsored by the local campaigns, going door-to-door and inviting people into your homes and sharing with them the hope God gives us, and how we think he has a better plan for this country than the two choices we have. It’s about optimism, listening, and providing a candidate for our country who represents the best in America!
Wait. If a church or ministry gets involved in the election, it’s a huge problem, right? They could lose their tax exempt status, and this is the exact thing Samuel the prophet was concerned about when he first named King Saul and then King David, the first two Kings of Israel. As God pointed out the specific need to Samuel and what he should do, he responded by complaining about the tax laws, fretting about money, answering first to the IRS, then to popular opinion, and of course, to how folks felt about him on social media. Isn’t that the story? Of course it’s not the story! Today we need to become a nation that gets on its knees before the one, true God, but if our Evangelical Leaders are going to back down, then how exactly is this going to happen? Who will lead us and who will influence a nation to find us a leader who will be on their knees before God, so we may be a blessed country once again?
God can do anything, and we want him to bless our nation. A humble, kind, brilliant and strong leader we can be proud of is not beyond what God can do, is it? Or did we give up somewhere along the way? Did we get lost in all of the rhetoric and just bow out. I say we stand up and do something. I say the Evangelicals unite to provide this country with another option, and I say we do it now.
Your job is to let your light shine, right? Isn’t this our commission, under the love and grace of Jesus? Aren’t we ambassadors of hope? If we truly love America and love its people, then Evangelicals will unite, lead and fight for our country to have the leader we deserve.