Neither Cynical nor Naive
Because this world has fallen and become broken, there is bound to be a gap between the ideal and the actual. Things are not the way they're supposed to be. Naive and unrealistic expectations will always end up as broken dreams when they crash into the reality of a harsh and sometime uncaring world.
But nothing is beyond redemption, is it?
Here are a few questions for us to consider: What if everyone in Washington, D.C. was suddenly overwhelmed by the grace of God? What if all the elected officials and candidates at every level (national and local) became as serious as you are about demonstrating the love of God to the people around them? Would both parties move closer together on issues? Would the two-party system be abandoned for something better? Would they all stop working in the government?
What would happen to our nation if some sort of serious spiritual awakening occurred on Capital Hill?
That’s worth contemplating, isn’t it? Heck, that’s worth praying about and working toward.
Look, I understand. Life is complicated, and in the face of such intricacies it’s understandable that some Christians will veer towards one extreme or the other. Some Christians look at the world and grow cynical. Citing disagreements among Christians, corruption among politicians, complacency among the general population, and confusion on a wide assortment of issues, some say things are hopeless. Time to hunker in the bunker and pray for Jesus to return soon.
In my opinion, these people show a lack of trust in God and his ability to speak to us, lead us into truth, and win us over with his love.
On the other hand, some bury their heads in the sand and pretend that life is really black and white. They believe there are quick solutions. They may even deny the problems altogether, quoting their favorite Bible verse (often ripped completely out of context) and dismissing all who disagree with them. These folks usually believe that if only we could elect the right person(s), they would be able to quickly and easily get our nation back on track.
In my opinion, these people are naive, simplistic, and superstitious -- certainly not the "men of Issachar" the bible lauds.
What is desperately needed in our world is a group of people who will work diligently at developing a Christian mind, one that will analyze the issues, reading the Bible, listening to others, employing discernment mixed with humility, and taking hope-filled action.
The world has enough Chicken Little pundits, loudly proclaiming that the sky is falling and the end is near. The world also has enough Pollyanna simpletons with their heads in the clouds pretending that everything is fine when it’s clear to anyone with sawdust for brains that something’s gone terribly wrong in our world.
Neither cynical nor naive — that would be a good characterization of Christians who behave themselves well in the political arena. Jesus used to say his followers should be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. As usual, I think he may have been onto something.