Nov. 2, 2016, was the day of the seventh game of the World Series, and I was ministering at Woods Edge Church in The Woodlands, Texas, at the request of my friend, Pastor Jeff Wells. Throughout the audience, I could see people expressing their team choice by wearing either Chicago Cubs or Cleveland Indians shirts.
As I got up to speak, I asked the crowd, "How many of you are Cubs fans?" Many enthusiastically responded in affirmation. I got a similar response when I asked, "How many of you are Indians fans?"
Then I said, "Tomorrow, some of you are going to be celebrating because your team won the championship. Some of you will be sad and disappointed that your team did not. But at the end of the day, no matter who wins or who loses, you'll still be Christians. You will still be members of the body of Christ, and you will still be part of the church."
I went on, "In a few days, the presidential election will occur, and many of us may have different political preferences. And at the end of the day, some of us will celebrate and some will be disappointed.
"But we must remember that our hope is not in the institutions of man, nor in a candidate or political party. Our hope is in the hope of glory, Christ Jesus. When the election is over, we will still be Christians and, as such, should reflect Christ even in our differences. Will must still be Christlike and love those who may disagree with us?"
A Return to Civility and Character
One of the biggest challenges in our society today is the lack of civility and character we display in our disagreements—even in the church. I've never seen so many people who are so adamant and opinionated—politically and otherwise—that they allow their preferences to divide their families, their friendships and even their churches. It's painful and heartbreaking, especially from those representing Christ, on both sides of the political preference spectrum.
The only unshakable kingdom is the kingdom of the Lord, and we the church must still love each other in our disagreements if we are to help others find their place in the kingdom.
We may all have our personal and passionate preferences in the outcome of the midterm elections. Many of us have utilized the privilege of our rights to vote for those personal preferences. Today, many will be pleased that their candidates have won, while others will be greatly disappointed that their candidates have not.
Church, may we remember that regardless of who wins or loses, we should recognize we are still to reflect the life and light of the Lord. We are part of the unshakable kingdom.
Americans, may we remember we are still one nation and have so much more in common than that which tries to divide us.
We can all strongly disagree without being disrespectful, dishonoring and destructive. We can still show civility in our public discourse.
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