Government: Respect or Complain?

I had every intention of doing a study about making good resolutions for the New Year, but my heart pulled me towards the subject of government, which is odd since I am the least politically minded person I know.

2013 is ending with a lot of Americans complaining about our government as a whole, not just the President or any one member of Senate or Congress. There is no confidence that anyone working within our government has the virtuous heart required to do such a hard job for all of the people, not just a select, elite few. To be sure, our media has also fallen into that same category, as it appears that what the average American considers top news is not exactly what the media puts out as top news. When we keep hearing that our economy is improving, but all I see are people still having difficulty making their basic bills or even finding a job. I know that isn’t the case completely, but I wonder if the reason the numbers are getting better is because the people who have been unemployed, are still unemployed and cannot file again for unemployment. I don’t know, but since the benefits are going to be expiring, I believe there will be some sort of change with our economic reports.

As I search my Bible for advice on how to handle my feelings for the government, I have discovered some truths that apply to the current government, at least in my opinion. The first is in Proverbs 29:2, “When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; But when a wicked man rules, the people groan.” My first thoughts were about all of the complaining I see on social media and hear from customers I get to talk to at work. I don’t hear anyone saying our government is doing a great job and that scares me a little, quite frankly.

As I continued my search for advice, I believe God led me to this next verse in Proverbs 21:1, “the king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes.” Now this sounds like the king is the puppet and God is the puppeteer at first glance, but then I got a little more insight on what it might mean. We are all free to choose how we live and what we will have faith in, so if we are not diligent in whatever faith we may have, we are not going to be stable people. God has a plan for everyone, but He will not control us. We must decide to trust Him for Him to use us effectively. However, He has the power to use a person who is not devoted to Him by allowing Satan to do what he always tries to do and that’s trick and deceive. I believe a person who happens to be in authority, if he is not devoted to God Almighty, then he is dangerously susceptible to being indecisive and making poor choices in his life and his job. I have to wonder if that is playing a part in our current government, as well?

Finally, I read Ecclesiastes 4:13-16, “Better a poor and wise youth than an old and foolish king who will be admonished no more. For he comes out of prison to be king, although he was born poor in his kingdom. I saw all the living who walk under the sun; the were with the second youth who stands in his place. There was no end of all the people over whom he was made king; yet those who come afterward will not rejoice in him. Sure this also is vanity and grasping for the wind.” Now, I know this has happened, because our current administration was quite popular when it first was voted in, but I believe now that popularity has deflated like a popped balloon. There is always a reason for whatever happens, but I believe it’s a two-way street.

This leads me to the last Scripture giving me advice: 1 Peter 2:13-17 “Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men-as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.”

This tells me that even when I have a corrupt government, my job is to trust God and live honorably, even respecting what government I have. In this day and age, that’s quite a tall order, but God never changes, so His requests aren’t going to change either. I am to trust Him. Honor all people with respect. Love my Christian brothers with support. Fear God not be afraid but revere Him as the most powerful being in all eternity. And Honor the king, or in my case, the President. If I trust God with all my heart (Proverbs 3:5), then I can live under the President’s authority without griping and complaining because I know that God is ultimately taking care of me.

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