Today’s edition of Five Minutes for Families may take you ten minutes to read. I want and need to share my heart with you about the state of affairs in our nation.

It’s been a rough month.

These turbulent times remind us that our only hope is in Christ and that our deepest need is for true revival in our nation.

That we are to fully embrace scriptural truths about not growing weary or despairing. To keep our eyes on Jesus. To be salt and light.

Over the last month, our nation has witnessed tragedy after tragedy with the loss of lives that trouble us all.

Increased racial tension.

One legal or political move after another threatening the sanctity of human life, family, and the freedom to live and work according to one’s faith:

  • An Iowa church filed a lawsuit to try to stop an Iowa state commission from prohibiting the pastor from preaching the gospel on human sexuality.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court rewrote abortion rules to give the abortion industry a free pass on following basic health and safety standards.
  • That same court declined to protect the First Amendment freedom for Washington state pharmacists to decline to provide abortion-inducing drugs.
  • Christian colleges in California may face a new state law that will compel them to choose between following their scriptural beliefs regarding human sexuality and continuing to operate and fulfill their educational mission. Churches in California are suing to block a law requiring them to provide health insurance coverage for abortions.
  • California doctors may legally prescribe drugs for a patient to commit suicide.
  • Over 250,000 Arizonans seem to think our state should have more marijuana dispensaries than Starbucks or McDonald’s and have recreational marijuana readily available and legal; even in candies like gummy bears and lollipops.

Daily it’s some other breaking development challenging the foundational principles of life, marriage and family, and religious freedom.

Daily the rule of law no longer seems to matter.

Then there’s this political season that increases the divide among citizens and even within the body of Christ.

We face perhaps the most challenging election of our lifetime. To say many are discouraged and even shocked at the two major party candidates would be an understatement.

I hear many saying they will not cast a vote for one of the two major party presidential candidates. Yet one of those two candidates will win in November, then appoint at least one, likely three, and as high as five justices to the U.S. Supreme Court.

I recently heard a noted book author say that for too long evangelicals have looked to the elections as either our demise or our salvation.

Nope. I’ve NEVER looked at an election as our demise or our salvation.

Elections simply give us the freedom to choose imperfect people to lead us. And, yes, elections frequently if not always give us the opportunity to choose between the lesser of two evils.

I read in many opinion pieces that character and morals matter in our elected officials. Yes, character and morals matter!

But how should or does one vote when the candidates both have significant character deficiencies? When it’s a “wash” between the candidates?

Options include:

  • Don’t vote.
  • Write in a candidate.
  • Vote based on the issues at stake.
  • Vote based on the future of the judicial nominees.
  • Vote based on the vice-presidential nominees.

Just as we are a divided nation, many committed followers of Jesus are divided as to whether or not they can vote for one of the two major party presidential candidates.

Families are divided on this November’s vote. Generations are divided. National leaders are divided. Ministry and church staffs are divided.

This division within the body of Christ cannot and must not divide us as a community of believers.

We must respect one another’s decisions and show grace to those who disagree with our individual positions.

The disappointment, anger, and even grief over the state of our nation cannot turn us inward into an attitude of “let’s sit this one out.”

In our beloved state of Arizona, too many significant family issues hang in the balance.

Whether or not the state legislature remains pro-life and pro-family.

Whether or not our state will be the next Colorado with the legalization of recreational marijuana.

As Al Mohler wrote recently:

In this difficult political season, evangelicals must not demonize one another as to how we’re thinking through these issues, but I must plead with all evangelicals that we must indeed think through these issues carefully and faithfully, and think very biblically and candidly. We are going to be learning a great deal more about the candidates in weeks and months ahead.

As CAP Founding President and Arizona Christian University President Len Munsil wrote recently:

We can reverse this… The History of the American People [and] Ron Chernow’s excellent biography of Alexander Hamilton…accurately reflect the trials, flaws and scandals of American history, but also clearly depict the positive role of Christianity and the brilliant and self-sacrificial conduct of so many Americans throughout history “heroes proved in liberating strife, who more than self their country loved, and mercy more than life!”

Let’s study history, remember who we are, regain our confidence and recommit ourselves to being positive, productive and unselfish contributors to a world that benefits from the leadership of a strong and virtuous America.

Read Len’s Remembering Who We Are blog post here.

This summer, don’t grow weary. Don’t sit out the election. Don’t neglect prayer.

Stand with us to defend our foundational principles.

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