The church of my youth had a bad habit of mixing political candidates with spirituality. I am a child of the culture wars. I remember one Sunday morning our pastor gave a sermon entitled, “Jesus for President.” The pastor told us that he would not tell us who to vote for and then proceeded to explain how the Republican candidate was more like Jesus than the Democratic candidate. I remember leaving the church and hearing a family say they would never come back. “One should never have to travel through a political candidate to get to the table of Jesus,” the mother replied loudly to her child’s questioning of her frustration. I didn’t totally agree with her then. I do now.
A few people have asked me about my thoughts on certain candidates competing in the Texas Primary tomorrow. These are my thoughts. I believe Jesus transcends political candidates and political candidates should never create a barrier to Jesus. If I endorse a political candidate then what are the people who support the other candidate going to think about my ministry? I believe that supporting political candidates inhibits my ability to minister to people from all walks of life. I intend to minister to all people regardless of their thoughts on political candidates. There is no question that I am a socially active minister driven by strong beliefs about love and justice…but make no mistake…I do not believe that we have met or will ever meet a candidate that encompasses the totality of love and justice and so I refuse to publicly bind myself to that which is partial…which is why I simply stick with the peace, love, justice and hope that is Jesus.
I encourage all to pray for our future and participate in our democracy…but don’t expect any endorsements out of me.