The coming Presidential election has been the recurring subject of many sorts of discussions in my timeline. For someone who desires to be informed and updated about my nation's future leaders, I make it a habit to read the news, the campaign posts (even comments included), and threads about several candidates with hopes that I may be able to make a wise choice. 

    I, personally, seldom participate in political conversations online and I absolutely have nothing against those who actively do. It is, in fact, encouraging to see some others that are sincere in educating their friends and sharing why they are voting for a certain aspirant. After all, I believe that all of us only want the best for our country. However, with the freedom that is entitled to everyone in the digital space, it has also sadly become a melting pot of bullying, online disputes, and crude remarks.

 Ever since the start of the announcement of candidates, my social media feed (and maybe yours too) has been flooded with the intense exchange of arguments - some even resort to personal attacks. What's sad even is that fellow believers have participated in throwing nasty comments and sharing mockery. These are those moments when I find it easier to silently judge them and feel better about myself because "at least I'm not like them." 

    Yet, in light of God's truth, I am, in no way, better than the people I'm judging. I, myself, am prone to wandering away and letting my emotions speak and act for me. I needed to be reminded of the gospel just as much as these people do. 

Called to be separated

    In a society of countless opposing opinions, name-callings, and public shaming has been a normal scene as we scroll our mobile phones. And sometimes, I am guilty of finding an offensive remark as 'funny' -  especially if it was made to favor what I stand for.

    While I understand that it is our obligation to wisely choose a leader (as even God has placed qualifications for elders in His church) and that we have different convictions in showing our support, it is also our responsibility as followers of Christ to represent Him in every way including even in campaigning for a certain candidate.  

But now you must put them all away: 
anger, wrath, malice, slander, 
and obscene talk from your mouth. 
Colossians 3:8 (ESV)

  There is always an honorable way to do things especially when the intention is to inform and educate. The Bible has always been explicit in pointing out how followers of Jesus Christ should be separated from the world. Being separated means not living, walking, and talking like the world. 

    As Christians, we are no longer bound by sin and so we have every freedom to give a comment and express a point in a way that we do not indulge ourselves in the festival of mockery and sarcasm. 

Called to love

 Taming our tongue and putting away obscene talk from our mouths is not the actual struggle here.  There is a bigger inner problem that is not instantly fixed by just a single reminder. 

"...for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks" 

    It is always easier to be gentle and careful with our words when we love the person we are talking to. And when we truly understand how God has loved us even when we had the worst things to say about him or even when our lives proclaimed abomination to His name, it reflects in the way we love others including strangers who may have thrown insults at us.

     When a person's heart is not renewed, he can only give love in the way that he knows - selfish and conditional. However, the Bible says that believers have been given a new heart and this heart seeks to love even those who seem undeserving of it. This love which bears fruit kindness and gentleness should echo in our speech and actions.

Christ, our Ultimate Hope

    God has put the governing bodies for a purpose and choosing the right people to lead is very important.  Yes, we should consider their credentials, plans, and the values they are representing but just because they fit in what we think a "perfect" leader would be, does not mean they cannot fail in the future.  We have witnessed countless kings in the Old Testament who failed even with their courage, wisdom, and power. 

   What I am trying to point out is that we must be very discerning in choosing somebody to elect but they cannot be our ultimate hope in this lifetime.

"...the greatest issues are not temporal, but eternal." - John Piper

    No matter who stands as the head of the country, he or she can never solve the greatest problem that each one of us suffers from  -  sin. 

    Only in Christ, we can place our full trust because it is Him who laid down His life for us even when we were His enemies. It is in Jesus that our future is secured for eternity and only all those who believe can joyfully look forward to the glory when we appear with Him in heaven. 

    It is never evil to have a stand for your country's future leaders but in doing so, may we be at all times sober-minded, not forgetting that we are under a greater Authority - the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords. May our words - online or offline - be pointing people to Christ and be an encouragement rather than a stumbling block.

May we, in all seasons, walk in wisdom and let our speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt(Colossians 4:5-6)