Tag Archives: Candidates

Anger Danger

When people talk about our Presidential campaign process it is usually with a mixture of dismay and disgust. How did we get here?  The word most frequently used to explain the chaotic turn of events is “anger.”  Voters have become so angry with what has and has not been happening in our government that they latch on to candidates who seem to share their sense of anger.  It is happening on both the left and right sides of the aisle.

But watch out!  Anger is understandable, but rarely a reliable starting place for developing effective solutions.  They say, if you want to win a fist fight, make your opponent angry.  In his anger he will make mistakes.  If we vote for those who simply sound angry, we will likely have to live with their mistakes.

Anger is frequently caused by feeling misunderstood.  Trouble is, anger also leads us to stop listening to one another, to less understanding and then to more anger.  That is why so often in our, so-called, debates, more than one candidate shouts at the same time, neither one listening to the other.  Without listening and genuinely seeking to find common areas of understanding, it is impossible to work together toward solutions.

Consider this:

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.  –  (James 1:19–20 (NIV84))

Instead of voting for someone who merely sounds angry, what about voting for someone who thoughtfully listens and then seeks a real solution to what has made you angry?

Who to Vote For

Don’t pay much attention to what the candidates say they will do.  Most don’t or cannot do most of what they’ve promised.  They have no way to know the circumstances they will really face.  Instead, consider their character.  Leaders tend to lead in the direction of the path they have consistently taken in life.  When you vote for a new President, or any other government position, you vote to have the country resemble the character of that person.  At the time of this writing, our two front runners are known for dishonesty and greed – not character traits most of us hope will shape our nation’s reputation.

Want a list of character traits to avoid and ones to support?  Consider these two lists, taken from the letter to the Galatians in the Bible.  Paul contrasts those motivated by “the flesh”   –  by which he means those who operate by the rules and impulses of the world  –  and those who take their cues from God’s Spirit.

Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, …  

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; … (Galatians 5:19–23 – excerpts)

Which set of character traits do you want in those who lead our country?  Which candidates resemble the list you chose?  Vote for them.

Please join me in praying for wisdom to prevail among voters.