One of the greatest joys of being a pastor is to sit down with people on a regular basis who are trying to discern the voice of God in their lives. What does He want me to do with my life? Should I take this job or not? Who am I supposed to marry? What’s the best way to heal my broken relationship? Most often, people are hoping that someone will just tell them in a sort of Old Testament prophetic voice: “Thus saith the Lord…” (because the King James Version is the best way to speak for God). But it’s a genuine struggle that most of us share – trying to figure out God’s will for our lives. In areas of finances, career, education, love, parenting – we are often pretty fuzzy about exactly what we should do with our lives and how to move forward. And so we seek Him. We pray, we fast, we ask other people, we listen closely for His leading.
And then there’s politics. It’s pretty amazing to me that suddenly we are all experts. Suddenly we all know EXACTLY what God would have us do. And clearly God is supportive of my political party. Clearly He’s rocking a blue tie or clearly He’s rocking a red one. What happened to all of that difficulty discerning the voice and will of God?
For some reason we struggle with these decisions:
Does God want me to love my neighbor? I’ll pray about it.
Does He want me to commit to a local community of believers? I’ll fast about that one.
Does God want me to be generous with my finances by helping the poor, giving to my church, or tipping above the minimum? God will have to give me a sign.
Does He want me to take a week off and go serve orphans in another part of the world? Well, I opened my Bible up randomly to Leviticus – so I think He wants me to grow out my sideburns.
Here’s my point in case it wasn’t clear: Let’s approach the political season with the same level of God-seeking that we do other areas of our lives. Let’s be consistent with discerning the voice of God. One thing I’ve learned as I grow in my faith – I am MORE certain of God’s love for me and for the world than I have ever been in my life, and I am LESS certain of the details of what faith lived out looks like all the time. I’m LESS certain of how right I am, and MORE certain of how good God is. I’m MORE certain of the forest and LESS certain of the trees.
May you and I walk humbly into this season with an open heart to the discerning voice of God.