Friday, May 7, 2010

Friday Five - Faith and Politics

Today's "Friday Five" can be a rather touchy subject for many, which is unfortunate. It can also be the source of some really great discussion if everyone can just keep on their big girl (or big boy) undies and be respectful of others and open to hearing new ideas, not feel personally attacked by disagreement. I'm not going to try to pick sides or start stuff here, but I am hoping that this gives me the guts to be a little bolder around here. So here goes...

1. Jesus a political figure: discuss... I think he was an accidental political figure. It's just what happens when you start shaking things up and doing things differently and other people start to listen.

2. Politics in the pulpit, yes or no and why? I won't speak to all pulpits, only mine. I don't do politics in the pulpit. Some people can do it very well, but I cannot. A good friend of mine did a great sermon the week before our last presidential election and titled it "How to Vote" which of course got some people riled up before he even started (which was the point) and then he proceeded to tell everyone not WHO to vote for, but HOW they should approach voting - through research, understanding of the issues and the candidates, through prayer, and serious consideration of their responsibility, then get off their rear and actually go vote! I would love to steal this sermon some day (or at least the basic concept) but I'm not there yet.

What I can (and do) preach about is ethics, morals, responsibility, and most of all love. Hopefully a little of it spills over into how others approach politics. As far as directly supporting candidates, positions, etc. I don't do it. I don't object to others doing it, but it's not going to come from me specifically.

3.What are your thoughts on the place of prayer in public life... Like most things in public life, I don't have a problem with it being allowed, but I also don't want it to be mandated. And I certainly don't think that it should be only Christian prayer! My general opinion is that if you want to pray, you should be allowed to do so (and in general, you will be). You should be free to invite anyone you would like to join you. But you should not expect EVERYONE to join you. And you should be free to NOT participate if you if you so choose.

Recently there was a big stink about the whole "National Day of Prayer" thing. I'll be honest, I don't know all the details about what happened or why but what I understood was that the president basically said he would not support a "National Day of Prayer". This is not a new thing folks. I remember being in school and the whole "See you at the pole" thing came under attack. It's the same basic concept. I did not publicly support National Day of Prayer in facebook groups or otherwise. Now please be very clear on something - I HAVE NOTHING AGAINST PEOPLE GATHERING TOGETHER TO PRAY. I THINK IT IS A VERY GOOD THING TO DO. But nothing was going to keep people from gathering together to pray. They just weren't going to have a banner to wave and you weren't going to get a t-shirt for participating. And honestly, if the reason you want to participate in something like that is for the attention or to simply say you did, I don't think you should do it because I don't think your heart is in the right place.

4.Is there a political figure, Christian or otherwise that you admire for their integrity? I honestly don't know. Every time I think so, I learn more about them and realize their public persona and their private self don't match up. And maybe I don't understand because I've never really been in politics, but isn't that kind of the definition of integrity? Maybe if I was more into history and politics I would have some names I could give you.

5.What are your thoughts on tactical voting, e.g. would you vote for one individual/party just to keep another individual/ party form gaining power? Ok, full disclosure - I have never done this. However, I have really wanted to. In general, if I am not passionate about voting for someone, I just don't vote. I don't vote like I should. I can blame some of it on practicality and the fact that, pretty much since I was able and registered to vote, I have lived far away. I voted absentee once and I actually voted in some local election once when I happened to be home one summer. I plan to be better about it now, so I hope I can continue to act like a grown up about the whole thing!

No comments:

Post a Comment