Cast Your Vote Everyday
Elections signal a time for citizens to vote for people they think will lead their country best and for policies they think will help their nation, state, or county progress. It's important that we exercise our right to vote because our vote, our voice, does make a difference.
What's the point of thinking about voting if you're too young to vote in elections? Well, you're still voting. In fact, we all vote all the time. We make choices every moment of every day, and that's a kind of voting. So what type of vote do you want to cast? What do you want to vote for?
After the children of Israel left Egypt, wandered in the wilderness, and then entered into the Promised Land, Joshua, their leader after Moses, basically asked them the same question. Many of them had turned away from God and had been worshipping idols and other gods. So Joshua told them that they had to make a choice, to decide whom they would serve -- the gods of others or the one, true God:
Now therefore, revere the Lord, and serve him in sincerity and in faithfulness…. Now, if you are unwilling to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve … but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord. (Josh 24:14, 15 NRSV)
When they said they wanted to serve God, Joshua challenged them again, saying that they couldn't just say they wanted to serve God; they had to mean it. They actually had to serve God 100%. They had to obey God. They would be held accountable for their vote. They agreed and made a covenant, a contract, with God.
If we really want to make a difference in any election, and if we want to impact our daily lives in a positive manner after elections have come and gone, then we need to "choose this day" whom we are going to serve, what we are going to serve.
Here are some choices we have every moment. How are we going to cast our ballot? Are we going to:
Vote for God
- serve God
- be ethical in all of our decisions
- make spiritual growth our number one priority, knowing we can lose nothing good
- fight for our God-given freedom, fight for the kingdom of heaven -- harmony and peace
- stand up to oppression of every kind, shape, and variety
- see each individual, including those who lead our nation, as God's child
- see light, hope, joy as coming from God, and be light, hopeful, and joyous
- seek out those who need help and help them
- pray for our president and leaders
- pray for our economy
- pray for our world
Vote for Trouble
- serve people and personality
- cut corners and ignore lying and cheating
- make material possessions important and worry about losing them
- allow evil, fear, worry, frustration, anger, etc. to terrorize us
- be doormats and not say anything when bullies hurt us or our friends
- criticize people and complain about what they do or how they act
- let depression, lack, poverty darken our thoughts
- think only of ourselves and blame others
- get upset at our president and leaders
- freak out about the economic situation
- believe that there's nothing we can do
These are only a few of the many choices for which we can vote. How we vote really determines our experience.
- If we cast our vote for good, we’re really voting for God, and we’ll experience all the good God has in store for us.
- If we vote for trouble, we’re really voting against God.
We may not consciously think we're voting against God when we get angry, feel frustrated, feel overwhelmed by all we have to do, get discouraged about problems we haven't been able to handle, or start complaining or criticizing. But we are. We're believing that all these things can replace God in our lives; all these things are bigger than God; all these things can overpower God. But they can't. Nothing is bigger than the all-powerful, all-good, and only God. That leaves no room for anything else. So let's cast our vote carefully -- firmly on the side of God, Good.
Let's take up Joshua's challenge, and let's agree to serve God in everything we feel, think, say, or do. Jesus' disciples found out what happens when they cast their vote -- their "net" -- on the "right side": they found more fish than they ever believed possible (John 21:6)! Let's cast our net on God's side and find comfort, peace, joy, light, happiness, harmony -- everything we could possibly want or need in our lives and in the world. That's how our vote can make a difference.