The Heartbreak of Conservative Christian Political Activism

I was reading an editorial about the Alabama special election Dec 12. The author Mark Galli was arguing that the real loser, no matter the election outcome, was Christianity’s image. He went on to say that conservative Christians, and liberal Christians for that matter, have lost the moral high ground in the eyes of the secular America, by backing politicians such as Roy Moore and Donald Trump.  (He pointed out that liberal Christians have had their own issues with morally bankrupt politicians.) Then he explained in his view why conservative Christians (evangelicals) feel the need to make deals with the devil in politics.

Galli talked about the changing tide of cultural norms, the increasing pluralism in society, and the attack on Christian religious freedom as the reason. He said these factors have caused conservative Christians to feel desperate, and vote for morally bankrupt candidates in an effort to get laws changed, or made, that favor Christianity. Their earnest view is that this will save all of America from slipping too far into sin.

Essentially, conservative Christians see that the world is becoming a more evil place — which it is. Yet, instead of looking to God for help, and trusting that God has a plan, they have decided that God needs their help. Apparently, The “if it has to be, it’s up to me,” idea from secular culture now permeates the evangelical Christian world.

As a practicing Christian, I found that answer to be heartbreaking. Throughout the bible, both old testament and new, God calls his people to stop trying to depend on themselves. He tells them time and again to look to, and depend on, him. He flat out tells the Israelites that he will fight their battles for them. The ultimate “I got this!”

In the new testament, we Christians are admonished even more to trust God, because we are saved by faith anyway. We didn’t, and can’t, do anything to make ourselves good enough for God. Why then would we tell ourselves that it’s our job to fix the nation, or a state, or even one individual? It isn’t! Our job as Christians is to reflect God’s love so fully in our lives, that people want what we have — Christ.

Sadly, my evangelical Christian brothers and sisters have decided that that job from the bible just isn’t cutting it in modern America. What God really needs Christians to get busy doing is electing people to codify Christianity. Use the secular powers that be to force the unsaved to act Christian.

Again, as someone recognizes that being a Christian means recognizing that I am a fallen sinner who can’t save herself, and needs Christ, this is heartbreaking. The entire old testament shouts that the law can’t save anyone! No one can follow every law all the time. That’s why Jesus had to make the ultimate sacrifice for us all!

If Evangelical Christian really believe that electing morally bankrupt people to secular political positions (where even more morally bankrupt behavior takes place) is the only way to save America, then Christ’s sacrifice was for nothing. Our Christian faith is meaningless. And, the one true God, the creator of the universe, has no power…at least in America. And that means that America really is doomed. That is heartbreaking.

Let’s remember this in our parenting walk. We aren’t in our children’s lives to save them, or make them into who we think they are to be, through our family “laws.” We are in their lives to point them to Jesus. The one who has the power to save them, and make them into who he has planned for them to be. We point them to Jesus through the example of unconditionally loving them, and offering them the grace, mercy, and forgiveness that Jesus freely offers us. You know, follow Christ’s example. I have to think that if following Christ’s example were the conservative Christian plan, Christianity as a whole would not have been the biggest loser in the Alabama election.

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What I’m Thankful for This Advent Season

 

What are you thankful for this advent season?

-Productive Mommy

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Spiritual attack, and pressing into the Lord

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Summer Recap: Productive Daughter brushes my teeth

Aug. 17, 2017

That’s my future dentist!

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Summer Recap: Playing with Bubbles

This video is from Aug. 15th. There was some really ugly stuff happening nationally. Watching my kids play with bubbles was cleansing.

-Productive mommy

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The ring in the sandwich bag

Is there a reason one of my wedding rings is in a sandwich bag? Yes, there is! I lost it, and my cell phone, Monday morning! 
First, I lost the ring, but didn’t realize it until I had been a couple of places. (My day started with a 7a.m. dental appointment.) Unfortunately, I couldn’t look for it right away because I had to get the kids to the Y for home school PE and swimming. 

After, we’re in the car about to leave the Y when I realize…I don’t have my cell phone. (I am not kidding!) So, I go back inside and retrace my steps. No phone! 

We go home, start looking for both the ring and phone. Thank God, we find the phone, but still no ring! 

I put the kids back into the car, and we go back to the two places I’d been in the morning. I search inside, and in the parking lot. (At this point I’m concerned that it slipped off my finger, because I had noticed that my other ring is super loose because of the cold weather.) Still no ring! 

So, I’m trying not to panic and cry in front of the kids. Of course, we pray, and Will says: You know, when you pray God works miracles! And, Jenni-Ri says: Don’t worry, if we don’t find it, we’ll just get you a new one! 

They made me smile, and I realized that worrying was not going to do me any good. Either God was bringing it back, or he wasn’t. We get home, and I’m so exhausted, and sick from a cold, that all I can do is get the kids a snack, put them in front of screens,  take a nap. 

About 3 p.m. I get a text message from my dental office that a customer found a ring in the parking lot, and gave it to them! We go get it, and the receptionist hands me my ring in a sandwich bag. Praise the Lord!

So, that is why my ring was in a sandwich bag. Now, both rings are safe in their jewelry box, and that is where they will stay until I get a ring reducer! 

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Victory from Defeat

You ever have one of those days where you wake up feeling defeated? Of course you don’t, you’re way too spiritually mature for that. Well…I’m not. So I have those days from time to time. And, yesterday was one of those days. 

I had had a really long night with the kids (they didn’t go to sleep until about 11:30 p.m.) and let’s just say I wasn’t exactly showing the love of Jesus the whole time. On top of that, we were meeting a friend at the zoo the next morning early for a play date. Historically, I have struggled with getting us out on time in the morning. I can get overwhelmed just trying to pack enough snacks for the several hour visit. Plus, we had another activity scheduled for later in the day. And, I’ve been really struggling to keep my energy up on long days. What’s more, I felt like the day before had not been very productive. 

So, I woke up with a head full of negative thoughts. And, honestly, I just wanting to cancel everything, get back into bed, and stay there. 

But then I thought, I need to take this to God, because cognitively I know that I am not defeated. Yet, here I am. So, I started journaling, (my way of taking it to God.), and I just said: God this is what happened last night, this is how I’m feeling, and I don’t want to feel this way. 

As I was writing, I remembered that a few weeks back I had written about the lies I believe about myself, and the truth God says about me. So, I flipped back, and re-read it. 

Something amazing happened! My feeling of defeat turned into a feeling of victory! The picture in my mind of how my day was going to go changed. I saw myself doing my best, and God making it enough. 

I started praising the Lord, as I got up, and started getting everything ready to go. 

Interestingly, I was actually late getting started because I took the time to journal, read my bible and pray. Often that just adds to my stress level. Yet, this time I hold myself, my Heavenly Father created time. Since I’m His daughter that means time is on my side. So, I decided I would work as efficiently as I could (i.e. no checking Facebook.) and I would trust God to work everything out. You would not believe how quickly I got everything done!

When I went to wake the kids up and get them ready, I was actually calm enough to sit and snuggle them before moving them into their day. Even though they had had a late (and rough) night, they did great!

I was so amazed that our whole day actually went well after waking up feeling defeated. All I can say is to God be the glory!

One other thing I noticed was that the parts of the day where I would struggle were when I let my mind focus on time, or whatever thing I had to do. That’s when my peace faltered, that’s when my parenting faltered. It seems spending my time thinking about my to-do list and how much time I have to do it in does not produce productivity.

It was a productive and victorious day!

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