Here, Pastor Gregg Matte shares five things we should consider as we prepare to cast our votes — not only in 2020, but in any election where we have the opportunity to choose our local, state, and national leaders.
The 5 P's of Stewarding Your Vote
By Pastor Gregg Matte
Being a citizen of the United States affords us a right that is envied by many in the world — the right to vote. As Christians, we often discuss the stewardship of resources. But have you ever thought of the stewardship of your vote?
Your vote is a precious resource provided through the sacrifices of other Americans through wars, legislation, trials, and tears. It is not to be taken lightly. We have an honor and the privilege to vote. May these 5 P's help you steward your vote well.
Pray each day for your city, state, and nation until Election Day (and beyond). Ask God to put the right people in office at the local, state, and federal level. This will allow your heart to settle in His sovereignty and you will cast your ballot from a place of peace.
- What issues do you care about the most?
- Which issues have biblical roots?
- Which issues are biblically neutral yet important to you?
Here are a few examples — feel free to add or delete topics to personalize the list:
Abortion, marriage, race, Israel, religious freedom, LGBTQ issues, ending human trafficking, the environment, safety in your area, the economy, military, taxation, criminal justice issues, education for our children …
This will differ on federal, state, and local levels, but we know that one person can’t do it all.
- Who will they hire or appoint?
For example, in the highly discussed and debated presidential race:
- Which candidate will appoint federal judges and Supreme Court Justices who best represent your faith? This will be influential for decades.
- Who would fill cabinet positions with people who most likely align with your values?
- Which Vice Presidential candidate is the best person to be “a heartbeat away” from the presidency?
- What organizations are endorsing the candidate?
- Do you respect and agree with the endorsing groups? Do they hold your values?
- What is the party platform of the candidate?
This can be helpful in choosing the “down ballot” candidates. In my county, there are races for over 20 offices in this election. It is difficult to thoroughly know each candidate in detail, so their chosen political party platform could help you understand their views. Well-balanced Christian voter’s guides can help quickly compare issues. A comparison of six different party platforms can be found at MyFaithVotes.org under the Take Action tab. Feel free to refer to other Christian voter’s guides, many of which can be found online.
- What do you know about the candidates?
- What are their strengths and weaknesses?
- Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. How have they influenced their life and policies?
- What is their background, education, experiences, beliefs, previous vocations, etc.?
Actually vote, especially as a believer in Christ. We need people of faith to exercise their right to vote. In the last decades, theological issues have become politicized. For example, issues like ending human trafficking or abortion require both prayer from the church and laws from the government.
- If you chose not to vote, you choose not to complain until the next election in which you vote.
- In tight races, your non-vote or write in vote can actually be a vote for one of the candidates. High voter turnout is a key element in the American election process.
- You have a vote to steward which is envied by many and paid for by the sacrifice of others. So do not leave it on the shelf — steward it well.
Trust God and steward your vote!
Visit Houston's First's home for election-related resources — VOTE 2020 — as you continue to prepare spiritually and practically for the 2020 elections this fall.