WARNING: This was written to my conservative Christian friends who have been asking me how I’m going to vote in the Presidential election.
For those who know me, it’s no surprise that I’m offering my thoughts on this election. Perhaps what is surprising, is that it has taken me so long. When hostilities arose on both sides of the fence about who the presidential candidates were, I decided to just keep quiet. I didn’t have the energy for the debate, and quite frankly, I was completely unsettled as to what to do. The one thing I knew to do was pray. So I’ve been prayerfully watching and waiting for God to make clear to me who I am to vote for and why. Not voting had been my choice, based on the fact that if I’m not sure, better to abstain. There is nothing about Hillary Clinton that I support and Donald Trump is not the first person (or 17th person) I would have chosen to represent my party. I had considered voting for a 3rd party candidate, but Gary Johnson is not the one. And although Evan McMullin looks like a most worthy candidate, I can’t vote for him because he is not on my ballot and in OK, we’re not allowed to write-in candidates.
I’m sharing my heart with you because so many of you have asked my opinion. Please know that I am not a Biblical scholar, nor am I a government expert. I’m a homeschool mom who studies diligently to raise productive citizens. I’m striving to be an educated voter and raise educated voters. My goal is that all my actions would glorify God, the Creator of all and savior of my soul.
I have no doubt that all the rulers of the world are given their authority by God Himself to fulfill His purposes for this earth and for the World to come (Rom. 13:1). I have no fear about who becomes president because I know that God’s purposes will be fulfilled – whether that is to restore America or to judge her. With so many godly candidates during the primary season, I am perplexed as to how we (Republicans) ended up with this baffoon as our candidate! I thought we’d have a righteous man (or woman…I liked Carley!) lead us out of our degradation and restore us back to our former glory. But alas, God’s ways are not mine (Is. 55:8).
Although there are several “third party” candidates, this election is really between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Is God judging us by giving us one of these two corrupt leaders? Maybe, like he did in the days of Samuel, he’s giving us the king we want. Read 1 Sam. 8:1-9. The Israelites, unlike other nations, were led by prophets appointed by God. God was their King. Samuel, perhaps their greatest prophet, was getting old and his sons were corrupt. The people didn’t trust God to appoint another prophet to replace Samuel when the time was right. They insisted on having a king like the other nations. And God commanded Samuel to do as they asked,
“Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you.” (v.7-8).
Sound familiar? Haven’t we, as a nation, been forsaking God and serving other gods for decades? How long will He let us continue to wallow in sin with no consequences? How can He bless us while we serve other gods? Maybe Donald Trump is the “king” we’ve asked for. Or maybe that’s Hillary. Maybe God, through this election, will bring about our calamity for the final destruction of this godless nation. Or maybe he will use a godless leader to bring us to our knees, bringing about revival and restoration in our land.
Here’s another thought. Maybe God is using the winner of this election, godly or not, to bring about His purposes for this nation and perhaps for greater purposes. How many times in Scripture did God use a godless person to fulfill His purposes? I was reading 2 Kings 5 and discussing the story of the leprous Naaman with some friends. We saw in v. 1 that Naaman was
“commander of the army of the king of Aram and…was highly regarded, because through him the Lord had given victory to Aram.”
Aram, although at peace with Israel at this time, was an enemy of Israel. This was a godless nation, and Naaman, by all appearances, was a godless man. Reading further into the chapter, we see the proud Naaman angry that the lowly prophet Elisha won’t greet him and “wave his hand over my wounds.” He wasn’t going to dip in the dirty Jordan River as Elisha had instructed. He was outraged. That doesn’t sound like the actions of someone whose heart followed God. And yet, right there, in plain text it says the Lord worked through Naaman to give victory to Aram…to fulfill God’s purposes.
Is it possible then, that God could be working through one of these candidates even if they don’t proclaim to follow Him? Look at Trump. Yes, he’s obnoxious and vile. He has no filters. But who is he surrounding himself with? Does it appear he is surrounding himself with godly advisors? I was originally outraged at Ben Carson and the Evangelical Christian leaders supporting this man. But what if God is softening Trump’s heart? What if Trump is listening to them? What if God wants to use this election to bring about Trump’s salavation? Outrageous, right?
As I have watched and prayed, I think I’m coming to understand that perhaps Trump himself didn’t think he’d actually be the nominee for president. I think he ran to shed light on subjects the Republican party has swept under the carpet for far too long. I think his purpose was to get the topics out there, be defeated in the primaries and move on with his life. Maybe along the way, his competitive ego got in the way and he just couldn’t stand to lose. And here he is. Maybe he’s contemplating the enormity of what he’s done and maybe it’s too big a job for him. Maybe this will bring him to a realization that he can’t do this alone. Maybe he’ll finally know how much he needs a savior. Maybe God is using this election to change Trump’s heart.
I watched his speech Fri. night…the speech where he finally laid out an actual plan of what he’ll do in his first 100 days if he’s elected. I was pleasantly surprised. He was controlled. He was coherent. He’s obviously been learning the ways of presidential presentation. I can choose to look at that in two ways; he’s allowing himself to be handled by his advisors, or he’s teachable. Do we really think Trump would allow himself to be handled? There wasn’t a single action item he addressed that I disagreed with. In fact, I embrace all of them. Which led me to remember why we elect a president in the first place.
Our government was carefully crafted by men seeking God’s will for this new nation. It was created with checks and balances. We all know that. The role of the president is to lead the military and make sure the laws of the country are being followed. He does not create laws. But he approves or vetoes the laws crafted in Congress. He can ask for laws to be written, but he doesn’t have the power all by himself to make laws happen. When we choose a nominee, we’re choosing a person who will work with Congress to make sure our party’s platform is accomplished. The platform is the list of things a party wants to see done for a period of time. There isn’t anything in the Republican platform I disagree with. Trump has outlined a plan that supports that platform.
The next president will present to Congress his choices for Supreme Court justices. Trump has presented two lists of people he thinks would make excellent Supreme Court justices. Originally, although I was happy with both lists, I wondered if he was placating us. I didn’t trust him to do what he said he would do once in office. But I have to take off my crazy conspiracy theory hat and believe that what he is presenting is what he will be held to by Congress if he’s elected.
For me, the most responsible thing to do is to vote for Donald Trump. I don’t have to like him as a person, but he’s the only one standing up for the platform I support. Fortunately/unfortunately, we have 30+ years on record of the public Donald Trump. There’s a history we can see of his person. We have no history of his public policy. Is it possible a person can change over time? Is it possible we’re seeing this transformation happening before our eyes? Do we have that same public record of any other candidate we’d elect? Even if Trump doesn’t change as a person, is it possible God could use him to bring about his Kingdom Purposes? When I vote for Trump, am I endorsing his character or simply voting for the one who will best represent my governmental ideals and support the platform I support?
I have to lay aside what I know about Trump and look to what he’s proposed. I can choose to believe he’s being honest about his goals or I can choose to believe he’s lying to us all. I’m choosing the former. I choose to believe that God’s hand is moving on Trump’s heart. I believe that as long as there are still praying people in America, God will delay His judgement (see Abraham’s plea for Sodom in Gen. 18:22-33 & also 2 Chron. 7:14). I think there is Biblical precedent for that and there is also historical precedent. After all, Winston Churchill, one of the greatest leaders of WWII, was a complete failure of a leader in his early adulthood.
Thanks for asking. And thanks to the friends who helped me talk all this out. You know who you are.