A Thought for the Day After the Election

For over a year, we’ve all been waiting for this day. The day that couldn’t come quickly enough to put us out of our misery. The day has finally arrived — tomorrow is Election Day!

We’ve been subjected to endless Facebook posts, the mud-slinging, the lies, the political pitches and the desperation. But now, the circus can finally come to an end! Tomorrow we will elect our next President of the United States of America.

But this past year has left many ready to just get this election over with, and not with excitement and anticipation for a new chapter in our nation’s history. Many, including myself, feel this election is a lose-lose situation for the American people. And in many ways, it is.

One the left side of the aisle, we have a corrupt liar who is under FBI investigation who craves power more than any other person on the planet. On the right side of the aisle, we have a narcissistic dingbat who doesn’t even have enough common sense and self-control to stay off Twitter at 2 a.m. Not to mention all the other scandals this year has brought us: emails, lewd comments, sexual objectification of women, covering up the accounts of sexual assault and rape victims, pay for play, corruption, slush funds and just plain old sheer idiocy.

It’s easy to see why so many Americans feel hopeless and are ready for this whole election cycle to be over.

But it’s important to remind ourselves, not just for this election but for anything we may face in our lives, of this timeless truth: God is in control.

Oftentimes, it’s easy to see the mess we’ve made or the chaos which surrounds us and begin to feel hopeless or scared. But in the midst of chaos, God has a plan. No matter what the results of the election are tomorrow or who our next president will be, none of that will change the eternal truth that God remains in control.

No man or woman can ruin God’s plan. No person is able to destroy the designs of YHVH. God does not need a Republican or a Democrat or in the White House for His purposes to prevail. He is Almighty and is able to triumph no matter who has control of congress, who is appointed to the Supreme Court or who sits in the Oval Office.

Let me clear, I’m not saying your vote doesn’t matter or you shouldn’t get out there and vote. I’m saying that He is unshakable and unchanging. After fulfilling your civic duty and voting, we must leave the election in His hands and trust that man, with all his flaws and shortcomings, will never overturn the eternal plan of the Father.

While we might be surprised, disappointed or even angry about the outcome of tomorrow’s election, He isn’t. He has a plan and a purpose for every twist and turn of life.

So as you get ready to vote, keep this truth in mind.

“A man plans his ways in his heart, but YHVH establishes his steps.” Proverbs 16:9

Happy voting!

Presidential Primary Voting Dates

Looking for when your state votes in the primaries? Look no further than this handy chart! You’re welcome.

Presidential Primary Dates by State, Date

State Date Filing deadline Primary/caucus Primary type
Iowa February 1, 2016
Caucus Closed
New Hampshire February 9, 2016
November 11, 2015Primary Mixed
Nevada February 20, 2016 January 1, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
South Carolina February 20, 2016 September 30, 2015Republican Primary Open
Nevada February 23, 2016January 9, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
South Carolina February 27, 2016November 16, 2015Democratic Primary Open
Alabama March 1, 2016November 6, 2015Primary Open
Alaska March 1, 2016January 28, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
American Samoa March 1, 2016Democratic Caucus Open
Arkansas March 1, 2016November 9, 2015Primary Open
Colorado March 1, 2016January 25, 2016Caucus Closed
Georgia March 1, 2016December 1, 2015Primary Open
Massachusetts March 1, 2016January 4, 2016Primary Mixed
Minnesota March 1, 2016January 4, 2016Caucus Open
North Dakota March 1, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Oklahoma March 1, 2016December 9, 2015Primary Closed
Tennessee March 1, 2016December 1, 2015Primary Open
Texas March 1, 2016December 14, 2015Primary Open
Vermont March 1, 2016January 11, 2016Primary Open
Virginia March 1, 2016December 10, 2015Primary Open
Wyoming March 1, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Kentucky March 5, 2016January 7, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Kansas March 5, 2016January 20, 2016Caucus Closed
Kansas March 5, 2016March 1, 2016Caucus Closed
Louisiana March 5, 2016December 4, 2015Primary Closed
Maine March 5, 2016December 15, 2015Republican Caucus Closed
Nebraska March 5, 2016March 11, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Maine March 6, 2016December 15, 2015Democratic Caucus Closed
American Samoa March 8, 2016Republican Caucus Open
Hawaii March 8, 2016February 16, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Idaho March 8, 2016December 9, 2015Republican Primary Closed
Michigan March 8, 2016December 11, 2015Primary Open
Mississippi March 8, 2016January 15, 2016Primary Open
District of Columbia March 12, 2016January 4, 2016Caucus Closed
Guam March 12, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Northern Marianas March 12, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Virgin Islands March 12, 2016Republican Caucus Open
Puerto Rico March 13, 2016Primary Open
Florida March 15, 2016November 30, 2015Primary Closed
Illinois March 15, 2016January 6, 2016Primary Open
Missouri March 15, 2016December 29, 2015Primary Open
North Carolina March 15, 2016December 21, 2015Primary Mixed
Northern Marianas March 15, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Ohio March 15, 2016December 16, 2015Primary Mixed
Arizona March 22, 2016December 14, 2015Primary Open
Idaho March 22, 2016February 5, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Utah March 22, 2016Caucus Closed
Alaska March 26, 2016January 29, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Hawaii March 26, 2016January 8, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Washington March 26, 2016February 26, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Wisconsin April 5, 2016January 26, 2016Primary Open
Wyoming April 9, 2016March 10, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
New York April 19, 2016February 4, 2016Primary Closed
Connecticut April 26, 2016March 4, 2016Primary Closed
Delaware April 26, 2016February 26, 2016Primary Closed
Maryland April 26, 2016February 3, 2016Primary Closed
Pennsylvania April 26, 2016February 16, 2016Primary Closed
Rhode Island April 26, 2016February 23, 2016Primary Mixed
Indiana May 3, 2016February 5, 2016Primary Open
Guam May 7, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
Nebraska May 10, 2016February 25, 2016Republican Primary Closed
West Virginia May 10, 2016January 30, 2016Primary Mixed
Kentucky May 17, 2016January 26, 2016Primary Closed
Oregon May 17, 2016March 8, 2016Primary Closed
Washington May 24, 2016March 10, 2016Republican Caucus Closed
Puerto Rico June 5, 2016Democratic Caucus Open
Virgin Islands June 5, 2016Democratic Caucus Open
California June 7, 2016March 26, 2016Primary Closed
Montana June 7, 2016March 14, 2016Primary Open
New Jersey June 7, 2016April 4, 2016Primary Mixed
New Mexico June 7, 2016February 2, 2016Primary Closed
North Dakota June 7, 2016May 2, 2016Democratic Caucus Closed
South Dakota June 7, 2016March 29, 2016Primary Closed
District of Columbia June 14, 2016March 16, 2016Primary Closed
Presidential primary dates are still being determined. The dates listed are subject to change.

Election Day!

So in case you haven’t heard, tomorrow (November 4, 2014) is election day! And while you all can take a wild guess as to how I vote, I think that our right to vote is something very important…no matter what your political affiliation. You might be surprised to learn that I do not hate people who vote Democrat or politicians who affiliate with the Democrat party (I may disagree, make fun of, or heckle a bit but never hate.)

Believe it or not, I don’t get upset simply because someone chooses to vote Democrat (although I do typically disagree with them). I get most upset when I see someone voting who is uninformed. And this isn’t just for Democrats. I also don’t like when people vote Republican and are uniformed. I don’t agree with Christians who vote straight Republican simply because they feel they ought to or because they think it’s their moral obligation to vote a certain way.

We are all busy, I get that. I don’t have nearly as much time as I would like to research the entire ballot before I vote, but I can logically explain why I voted the way I did. All of this “I was born (insert chosen party affiliation here) and I will die (insert chosen party affiliation here)” is crap to me. What good is having a voice in the political goings on of your nation if you’re just going to throw it away?

The truth is, I don’t care how you vote…just as long as you vote informed.

In our world, voting is a privilege that we too often take for granted. Even in other nations where citizens can vote, the election process is usually just a corrupted façade. If you need examples, look at Iran, North Korea, Egypt, the West Bank and Gaza, and a myriad of other nations around the world where the voting process is merely a formality in an already rigged election.

But here, in America, our voices are heard. Our opinions matter. That’s one reason so many people are adamant about voter IDs and get worked up over any hint of voter fraud. It’s not that people are racist or mean or that we hate illegal immigrants, it’s that our right to vote is something so crucial to the way our government operates, we don’t want anything to impede justice…or our voice for that matter.

But too often, I see that we don’t fully appreciate our right to vote. Nothing upsets me more than when someone votes a particular way because they feel they have to and not because they truly believe in the candidate. I get so peeved when people throw away their vote on bad reasoning. I’ve heard, “Well they’re both bad, so I’m just not voting.”

Or this jewel of an argument: “Well if we need evil to bring about God’s plan then I’m going to vote for the candidate I disagree with the most to help bring it about.”

Both of these arguments are some of the stupidest arguments I have ever heard. For one thing, God doesn’t need your help! His plan will come about whether you vote or not; whether you side with good or evil; or whether you were Republican or Democrat. But He definitely doesn’t need your help.

But secondly, let me clarify something for you: you will NEVER agree 100% with any one candidate. I don’t care what their party affiliation or what they stand for, you will never agree on every single issue. And that’s ok.

Think about it this way, you won’t ever agree with ANYONE all of the time. Not your spouse, best friend, church pastor, co-worker, your identical twin, your beloved dog, or favorite TV character. You just won’t. Ok, maybe I went a little overboard there, but you get my point.

You wouldn’t divorce your spouse (or not marry them in the first place) simply because you disagreed on one issue. You wouldn’t stop being friends with someone because they didn’t see eye-to-eye with you on what really is THE best episode of 24. If you did, you would never get married, or have friends, and wind up alone and eating Ramen noodles with your 32 cats.

My point is that you can’t just bury your head in the sand and not vote at all simply because you don’t completely agree with one candidate. You also can’t just vote a particular way because you feel you have to or that’s the way you’ve always voted or because you were told that’s how you should vote. Take a step back, evaluate your decision, and if you choose to continue voting the same way, fine. But at least you’ve given it real thought.

You have to do your research, learn which candidates stand for what issues, and then decide which issues are most important to you. THEN, go vote!

Don’t let your family, friends, pastor, traditions, obligations, or favorite news anchor (especially the ones from CNN or MSNBC) tell you how to vote. The way you vote is something only you can decide. Pray about it and let the Holy Spirit guide you on how to vote.

But don’t be so quick to give up your right to vote. When we give up this right, we allow our voice to be silenced. And our job is to be a Voice in the Desert preparing the way of the LORD!

So let’s get to the polls and VOTE!