I spent the first couple days this week at a pastor’s conference/rally. I call it that because it seems the duel purpose was to be an encouragement to pastors, to offer some useful information regarding the church and political involvement; but then also to “hype” us up about this year’s election.
Being a conservative and hanging out with conservative folks, being on conservative mailing lists, this was obviously a conservative event. But more than that, it seemed to have a subtle undercurrent of being a Republican event.
Now, I understand that for the most part, conservative folks are going to be Republicans. Those who are pro-life, pro-faith and pro-family tend not to align themselves with the Democratic side whose party platform confesses an outright attack on all those issues and then some.
Still, with all that’s happened in recent years in the GOP, with the constant barrage of “moderate” candidates being shoved down our throats, and with an ever increasing lack of genuine commitment to those truly conservative social issues, it’s frustrating to have a “pastor’s conference” that so closely aligns the Gospel and the GOP.
One of the best speakers of the whole conference was Laurence White, a well known Lutheran pastor from Houston, and speaker on the issue of the Sanctity of Life. I’ve heard Pastor White before and I thoroughly enjoy his impassioned pleas to remind us that the issue for today; rather THE ISSUE for today, is the issue of life. If we continue slaughtering millions of unborn children each year, then it really doesn’t matter what else we do. I agree and support him when he says that it is sin for Christians to vote for anyone who would condone such murder.
However, the issue Pastor White brought up that really got my attention was this. He was remarking on the fact that politicians have by and large seen religion as a tool. People of faith are a demographic to them, nothing more, and they “use” us for their own purposes. He then made the point that the Republican party has for years now simply “used” people of faith to promote their own agenda.
And again, he’s right. I’ve said here over and over that the GOP just assumes we will vote for them, simply because they are not Democrats. Therefore, they can throw John McCain or Mitt Romney at us, neither of whom is truly conservative, and we’ll have to support them just because. We’re being used.
Pastor White then said this. It’s time we had less G.O.P. and more G-O-D. The point was that godly, Word based churches needed to focus less on supporting the Republican Party and more on supporting the Gospel and Biblical values. And I couldn’t agree more.
Here’s the thing. As he is preaching this good word, pastors all over the room are yelling “amen.” When he tells us that we need to stop being patsies for this party and support true godliness, people are again yelling “amen.” And yet, by and large, these same folks will go right out and support Romney in spite of the fact that he is not the godly “shepherd” we were told at this meeting that our nation needs. But they’ll support him because he’s Republican and not Democrat.
When will we wake up? Everything I heard (at least most of it) at this meeting was dead on. We need to wake up the people in our churches, have them get in the fight, have them get involved in the political process, stand for truth, stand for life, stand for families, etc. We need to seek godly men and women who reflect our values and support them in public office. But here’s the thing, Mitt Romney is not that man. He doesn’t reflect my values, he’s flip-flopped on major social issues like life and health care, his “faith” is not the same as mine. So why should I support him? In the end, his values are not mine any more than the other side. And so I'll support Virgil Goode of the Constitution Party instead.
Now, don’t get me wrong. There are some good godly men and women running for office in the GOP. Men like Todd Akin, running for the US Senate here in Missouri. Yes, I know he made a really dumb statement. So have I, so have you, and so has every other public figure ever put on the spot. We’re human. But I know the guy well enough to know his true beliefs and commitments, and I support him 100%.
However, I also know there are a lot of folks on the ballot who are not worthy of my vote, or yours. Moral issues, “issue” issues, stand in the way. Meanwhile, here in Missouri, we have alternatives like Cynthia Davis running for Lt. Governor on the Constitution Party ticket. This is one of those races where I can’t support the Democratic Party period, and I can’t really support the GOP nominee because of those issues, but we have an alternative. So I’m not giving in to the lesser of two evils, I’m going to vote my conscience.
In fact, that’s what this meeting was all about: voting our values. And I agree. But where these folks assumed that voting our values would automatically mean a vote for the GOP candidates, truly voting my values means finding a candidate, where possible, that genuinely reflects those values. More often than not, those candidates are on the Constitution Party ballot.
We heard a lot about our nation’s origins and the godly foundations and the solid foundation of our Constitution. And again, I agree that we need to return to all of these. But as we’ve seen in recent years, Republicans and Democrats alike have trampled the Constitution under foot; and it is indeed time for a change.
As I have said here repeatedly, go and check out the Constitution Party platform. Compare it to the platform of the other parties. Look at the candidates from ALL parties who will be on the ballot in November and truly vote your values and your conscience. Pastor White was correct: It’s time for less G.O.P. and more GOD in our churches and in our elections.
(NOTE: the above post reflects my personal opinions, not those of any other party, person or organization. While I approve this message, they may not, but it’s not their fault!)