Is Our Democratic System Failing?
On November 8th, 2016, The US Presidential Election was held and Donald J. Trump was elected over Hillary R. Clinton to be the 45th President of the United States. I learned this while watching the election coverage late into the night. During that time, I began to dwell on some thoughts/questions I had about how our nation got here?
THE LESSER OF TWO EVILS
I saw a lot of voter interviews during the all-day voting coverage. I also stayed up to date with the entire election cycle. The overwhelming landslide victory in regards to citizen comments about this year’s election was that, “I don’t like either candidate. I wish there were more choices.”
It was clear the nation was unhappy with the voting choices presented in front of us for President. However, I was also confused because we chose to let them get there.
We held primaries, caucuses, and allowed anyone to run who met certain qualifications. Trump and Clinton chose to run and throughout the nation millions of supporters gave to their campaigns, voted them into position over other candidates during the primary process, and then voted for them on election day.
If we were unhappy about the choices of who to vote for or are unhappy today with the results we should remember that we could’ve done something to have changed what happened. The people of the United States had plenty of opportunities to choose someone besides the lesser of two evils.
Earlier this year, my family and I travelled in the rain to Jefferson City, MO to hear Franklin Graham, son of evangelist Billy Graham, speak on the steps of the capitol building. Graham was travelling to all 50 state capitals to encourage people to vote, get them registered, share the gospel, and remind people of one thing:
You have a choice.
Graham spoke about the choices we have as Americans to choose our elected officials and support them as the leadership of our great nation. However, he went on to ask a little more of the hundreds of thousands of Christians he spoke to over the course of these 50 events.
WILL YOU CHOOSE TO RUN?
Franklin Graham, spoke with great fervor about his desire to see Christians in office and stepping up to leadership roles in this country. He said it could start at the local level, that we could run for a board seat at our nearby schools, become a city councilperson, or run for any city office. Graham reminded Christians it is our duty to serve others and government is a highly esteemed position of servitude.
I will admit, I took that message to heart. I tried, and failed, to get elected to an office at a local level earlier this year. Yet, I know there are others like me, who don’t just want to vote for the lesser of two evils, but see Christians with vision running for office so they can serve their country as Christ teaches us to.
Yet, as I voted I didn’t see new names on the ballot, I saw long time incumbents running against other lifelong politicians or familiar names in government. Did no new Christians choose to run in this election? Was it because they didn’t think they could win? They didn’t think they knew enough? They didn’t think they were good enough?
I’m not sure what kept new names off the ballot or prevented Christians from asking God if they should seek out offices in government in this election cycle. I do know this, and I learned this lesson from Donald Trump.
Anyone can run for office and get elected.
Donald Trump was the unlikeliest of candidates to win the presidential election. From when he first announced his candidacy up until the minutes before Clinton conceded the race, Trump was discounted. They even bet on it!
Most, if not all, of the political pundits at one time said he would never win and most of the news mediacontinued that message during the entire election cycle repeated he would never win. So many people “in the know” discounted Trump, a man with no political experience, and absolutely believed he would never win the highest office in the land. They were all wrong.
While we may not hear them apologizing for their incorrect opinions, much like we don’t hear a weatherman apologize for telling us it will be sunny while we are stuck out in the rain without an umbrella. The news media had everyone convinced Hillary Clinton would win the presidency in a mighty voting victory, but the votes rained in for trump and we had no umbrella.
Trump's election encouraged me, and not because I wanted him to get elected. His appointment encouraged me because it proved that anyone can run for and win an office. Even the unlikeliest candidate. God often uses the weak to confound the wise. Maybe that’s you. Maybe you hear a call from God on your life but don’t think you are good enough or experienced enough to win. Trump taught us all, no matter who you are, you have a chance.
You can run for office without experience, you can fight against everyone who says you are not the right person, and you can win.
HOW DO WE FIX THE SYSTEM?
Our Democratic system is broken, but it isn’t broken because of the methods we use to elect and vote, it’s broken because Christians aren’t asking God if His plans for us are to run for office. So many people aren’t putting their trust in Christ and choosing God’s path for their lives and because of that we are left with choosing to put our trust in a president.
For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Ephesians 2:10
Did you know you were created specifically for a purpose? Did you know your purpose is to do good in this world? Is your purpose to be a leader of this country? If not, what is your purpose?
If you don’t know the answers to these questions, all you have to do is pray and ask God to reveal the answers to you. When He does, you will have to make that choice everyone faces.
Will I step out in the path God has for my life or the path I want for myself?
If no one chooses God’s path for their lives change will never come. It won’t come in their lives and it won’t come in our democratic system either. And four years from now, if Christians haven’t asked God if they should serve and step out in faith to do so, we will likely be looking at ballots like this past one, questioning another choice between the lesser of two evils.
Our view outside Jefferson City Capitol Building with many Americans being encouraged by Franklin Graham to run for office ourselves
I am believing for more than that. I am believing for the revival of my city in St. Louis and a great awakening in this country. It will take Christians discovering their purpose and doing good things in the name of Jesus Christ for that to happen.
Jesus is already King. We will elect Him to be the Lord of our lives? Will we choose to make this world a better place by being servants of all? Will we choose to serve in government?
Will our next president be a mighty man/woman of God? Can we fix our broken democratic system?
Will someone step out of the crowd and go where Christ is calling them? The choice is yours.
(trump photo credit, cnn.com)