by Dr. Tim Crouch
Like most Americans after November’s election, I was pretty tired of all the bluster. But in the weeks that followed, I felt compelled to voice a few observations that deserve special sensitivity from followers of Jesus.
- The polarizing nature of this election demonstrates a deep divide in our country. And the church does not escape this. For many believers the choices were agonizing. We’ve not all agreed.
- The reported impact of “the evangelical vote” is causing some among us to grieve—if not leave—association with the evangelical church. For them our confessional name has morphed into a political label carrying baggage that does not speak of the good news of Christ.
- Many people—particularly women, immigrants, people of color and of non-majority faiths and values—find themselves in fear, pain, and vulnerability. Some of these are our own brothers and sisters in the Lord. All of these are precious in His sight.
How should we respond to these things? In Philippians 2:3-4 Paul reminds us to “3Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.”
I’m assuming each of us have come to our opinions and votes conscientiously. But having done so, would we now turn attention away from ourselves, our positions, our parties? Could we be known as a people gracious and sensitive to those with whom we disagree? Can we demonstrate a listening, non-defensive posture to those who’d label us or those who are just discouraged and confused? Will we offer safety and service to those who feel threatened and vulnerable after this election?
Verse 5 of Philippians 2 continues, “In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” As evangelical believers, let’s first and foremost be known as being like Jesus. Today, that’s exactly what our country needs.
Tim Crouch, DMin, is the vice president for International Ministries at the U.S. Alliance National Office in Colorado Springs, Colo.