Today’s blog post is written by one of the college members of Unite, Elizabeth Brock. Just a warning, if you don’t want God to speak to you about this subject, then don’t read this blog post…
The first week of July is one of my favorite weeks of summertime mainly because it contains my favorite day of the summer—July 4th. This day, with all its fireworks and hot dogs and people wearing inappropriate clothing in public, seems to fully encompass all the wonderful things about being an American. It is a day solely devoted to being outside in the smoldering July heat surrounded by family, friends, and good food. It is a day-long celebration of America, praising all the things we love and “expertly” critiquing all the things we hate. This week, I will inevitably find myself sitting in a circle with a few outspoken citizens, discussing the government and all the terrible decisions they have recently made. I will proudly share my opinion of our President and express how dearly I hope he is not in the Oval Office this time next year. We will share all the ways we would have done things differently had we been the ones to make these critical decisions.
And the truth is this is what a lot of Americans will be doing this upcoming Wednesday, so my party will not be so very out of place. But here’s the greater truth: the latter activity is wholly unbiblical.
I opened my Bible this morning to find a Scripture relating to a blog post I was writing but instead was blindsided with a passage highlighted in neon pink.
“Paul replied, ‘Brothers, I did not realize that he was the high priest; for it is written: ‘Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people.’’”
How many times do we sit in our sewing circles, gossiping and complaining about the nation’s leaders and with the very same lips, proclaim the name of Christ. As we see in Acts, God has given very clear instructions on how we are to treat the people of authority in our lives. This Scripture applies to every position of authority: our bosses, our law enforcement, our pastors and Sunday school teachers, our professors, etc. Unfortunately, it is not written, “Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people, unless you simply don’t agree with them—then, by all means, gripe away.”
But God, don’t you see him? Don’t you see what he’s doing to this nation? Don’t you see how inappropriately she is handling this class? Don’t you see that I could do his job way better? Furthermore God, don’t you see that they are not consulting you in their decision making process?
These questions try to overrule the conviction that comes with Acts 23:5. Here’s the truth, though: God does see. He does know the heart of every leader, every teacher, every person of influence. But the comfort comes from knowing that though the authorities in our lives seem to have a lot of power held under their thumbs, the God of the Universe is the ultimate authority. Psalms 2 says:
“Why do the nations conspire and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth take their stand and the rulers gather together against the Lord and against his Anointed One. ‘Let us break their chains,’ they say, ‘and throw off their fetters.’ The One enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord scoffs at them.”
In this passage, King David is reminding us that, despite all the treacherous bills passed or the corrupt men and women in places of influence, God is still in control. He is still sovereign and He still sits on the throne of Heaven.
So this Wednesday, instead of frowning when presented with the opportunity to insult and critique the decisions made by people of influence with the thought of all the problems they create, smile and praise the God of Heaven for being the ultimate authority over this great nation.