A Pastor’s Tips on Voting

Posted by Katherine | October 28, 2008 – 9:54 am
Church and US flag
Church and flag
[Golden ~Eye~ / Flickr]

Jeff Leake is a Steelers fan (he lives in Pittsburgh) and likes reading novels at Borders bookstores. He’s also the lead pastor of Allison Park Church and has been asked a lot about the election and how to consider the candidates. Here’s a longish excerpt from his thoughtful offering:

First, my hope for the future of the USA does rest in this election. I believe in voting. I also believe that good leadership is critical to any nation, church, family, or business. But I believe that God is big enough to work in and through whatever happens on Nov 4th and beyond.

Second, my primary concern is with the Kingdom of God and not with the United States of America. I know that sounds almost offensive to some people. But the USA is not the center piece of the vision that God has for the world. His primary concern is with souls coming to know Jesus. Often it seems that Christians in the USA think that God’s main concern in the world is with our own nation. The world is so much bigger than that. He is just as concerned with Rwanda or Nicaragua as He is with the USA. Mostly He is concerned with the lost, the hurting, the poor, the innocent, the vulnerable.

Third, I believe that a believer should consider moral values, character, and vision when they make their decision to vote. […] Some of the values that I will be thinking through will have to do with the unborn, the definition of marriage and the family, with helping the poor, the end of racial injustice, and with standing up for human rights in parts of the world where people are at risk (just to mention a few).

Fourth, my responsibility is to pray for and even bless governmental leaders, even when I disagree with their policies. Whoever is elected as President, I will bless. I am not going to speak evil, spread false rumors, or run down my leaders. Some people’s Christianity will be tested on the Wednesday after the election as to whether they will act in love, faith, and blessing toward the person who has been elected. […]

Sixth, my passion is to represent Jesus well in the world. Partisan attitudes often divide. When we speak harshly or unfairly of one candidate or another, we affect things as much by our negative fear based attitude, as we do by our words. One reason why younger people in our nation are closed the to the church is due to the perceived anger and self-righteousness of people identified as Christians. I believe we should stand for what we believe in, but with humility, kindness, patience, and grace.

Seventh, I want to protect the unity of the church […] I personally know many believers who are passionate for Obama. I know many who are just as passionate for McCain/Palin. […] In the church where my father-in-law pastors, there are Contras and Sandinistas who worship together. These two groups had been in civil war for years. Surely, Republicans and Democrats can worship together and yet disagree on who to vote for?

Jeff closes by saying that Jesus — not McCain or Obama — is the “hope of the world” and that no matter who’s elected he’ll “continue to walk in faith.”

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  1. One Response to “A Pastor’s Tips on Voting”

  2. Thanks for adding my photo as part of your post.
    ~ Golden Eye ~
    http://www.TimGolden.com

    By ~ Golden Eye ~ on Oct 28, 2008

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