The king’s heart is like channels of water in the hand of the LORD; He turns it wherever He wishes. Proverbs 21:1
In my own small world I am in survival mode. Struggling to keep the souls in my home fed, loved, clothed. Juggling the two-yr-old’s numerous therapy sessions. Striving to teach young children to learn, to question, to read, to not pick their noses in public, to write, to reason, to love, to get dirty clothes in the hamper. Wondering about the fate of our 401K. Longing to get a healthful meal on the table. Wrestling my bossy calendar. Trusting God with every difficult day. These days are full of purpose. These days are a blur.
Now pull back with me a little more. I see the families right alongside me. It’s the same thing. Scheduling. Food. Sickness. Bills. Shelter. Schooling. Aging parents. Children with every special need under the sun.
Now pull back a little more. Can you see our America? A little more. Can you see a world? Forgive this hoakiness and hang with me…
Now pull back a little more in time. We’ve been here before. Long, long ago. Always, the people need a king. We think we need a king. We desire a king. We ask for a king. We ask the God of the universe for a king.
We are deeply afraid of freedom. A few laws won’t do. Always more and more and more laws. Suffocated under the weight of law. Hearts stifled under the litigious load. We always seem to end up webbed in rules of our own making. Why must all nations follow this pattern?
Every election brings the same thoughts. Humans want kings. We hope in a terribly warped system of power in Washington where money is ruler. And we are willing to be jerks about it. Beware of looking to a government, any government, to be your God, your Holy Spirit, your Great Physician, or your Provider. Beware of permitting a government to do your generous giving for you. Beware of allowing a government to feed the hungry you should be feeding. Beware of giving government the job of caring for orphans. Beware of charging government with teaching your children about God. There are just some things God meant for you to do. Yes, you. Because it’s your heart He’s concerned about. Government doesn’t change hearts; that is God’s territory. It doesn’t end well when we give God’s territory to another human.
Welcome to election season in America. I used to like it. But, I expect better candidates from a country like America. I expect money to matter less. I expect truth to matter more. I expect to feel hopeful for my family’s future. I expect friends to avoid snarkiness. Maybe I expect too much. I expect God.
We quickly forget the God who establishes kings and governments. We forget He sometimes gives a people exactly what they ask for. We forget it’s all flipped upside down: We really want God Himself, not an elected imitation. We forget we are free.