Wednesday, November 9, 2016
We Have a New President. Now What?
We have a new president today, one who promises major, radical change.
The really hard part has just begun.
Our president-elect has a little over two months to prepare for a job that is too big for anyone brave enough to try it.
This is not a time for gloating or boasting. This is a time for Mr. Trump to settle down to the hard work of learning the law, getting to know the people with whom he will be working, and choosing wise people to surround and help him.
I don't want to discourage anyone in their time of celebration, but there are a few things we, and he, need to remember.
We are a nation governed by laws.
Some of those laws are not good. As law-abiding citizens, we, and Mr. Trump, still have to obey those laws until they are changed. There is a way, and a process, to change and repeal bad laws. That process, for the most part, rests in the hands of the congress, not the president.
Mr. Trump will not have the authority, nor the power, to repeal the ACA or laws concerning abortion, physician-assisted suicide, or term-limits. He can veto new laws, but congress can still override his veto.
If he wants change in law, he will have to work together with congress to accomplish it.
Our constitution provides for checks and balances in the three branches of government: executive, judicial, and legislative.
Our forefathers had experience with too-powerful government. They wisely chose to limit the powers of each branch so that one person could not "reign" unchecked. Mr. Trump will be head of the executive branch. He will not be the boss of the judicial or legislative branches.
He will need to work together with the other branches to accomplishes change.
It is God who establishes the authority over us, and He has established Mr. Trump.
We don't need to forget that, nor should he. There will be times when we disagree with what our new president does or says. We are to honor his authority. We are not to write scathing posts on social media. We are not to call him names or speak against him. We are to honor the office as that of God-given authority. Because it is. Period.
Christians are directed to pray for their leaders, and this new leader needs our prayers more than he knows.
He will experience temptation to a degree he's never experienced before. Pray he can resist.
He will experience spiritual warfare to a degree he's never experienced before. Pray he can stand firm.
He will need to make decisions he's never made before. Pray he will be wise.
He will need to hold his tongue and bide his time in a way he's never done before. Pray he will tame his speech.
He claims to be a new believer in Christ. He will need to grow in faith, in knowledge of Scripture, in relationship with God. Pray he does.
Christians need to do their part.
It's time we stop grumbling and start living as we are called to do. We've said we want change. If that is true, we need to be change agents. Get involved in the world outside the doors of our churches. Get involved in the lives of those who are hurting, who are making bad choices, who need the redemptive power of Jesus.
The "church" was never meant to be a social club. We are to be a family who worships together, learns together, and works together to take the good news of Jesus to the ends of the earth. Worshipping and learning are only a part of the mission of the church.
We need to live like the people Jesus died to save.
In this country, the ones who have the greatest power to create change are those willing to relentlessly pursue it. Know the law. Learn about the issues. Talk to legislators. Vote. Volunteer. Get involved. Make a difference.
We can have real, substantive change, but only if we, the people, change first.
We must give up our sense of entitlement. Stop asking, "What do I deserve?" and start asking, "What can I do to help?" Be willing to tackle the hard issues of national overspending. Tighten our belts. Pay our debts. Tackle the issues of runaway health care. Stop saying, "Do all you can do." Start saying, "Do what's best." Start taking responsibility for our own health and quit relying on medicine to do what we should do. Exercise. Eat right. Give up the habits that are killing us.
For all his bluster and bravado, Mr. Trump is not "the change" we most needed. We are. So, body of Christ, we have a fresh start. A new chance. A better day.
Let's be the change we say we want. Let's be the people of God we say we are.
If we want to make America great again, it takes more than a new president. It takes repentance, humility, and prayer.
This time, let's do what it takes. Let's make America great again.
"Let every person be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those which exist are established by God." Romans 13:1 nasb
In case you missed it, here's the link to yesterday's post: Do More Than Vote Your Beliefs, Live Them