America has been a lot in the news lately and I wonder if there has ever been such a keen interest in the run up to a presidential election.
Donald Trump has certainly caused a vigorous reaction. Should our interest be merely for entertainment or is there a serious side?
Similarly we shall also be voting in a month or so’s time to decide if our country should remain a part of the European Union.
These aren’t matters to be decided on the flip of a coin, but are weighty matters affecting the peace and the ability to function of the western world.
It is one of those old chestnuts that you shouldn’t mix religion and politics, but how can you avoid it? The ways governments function and the decisions they make affect the wellbeing of society as a whole and why shouldn’t God be concerned with such things?
A gung ho, “Let’s nuke ‘em!” president in the White House could have significant effect on the peace of the whole world.
How we decide about the European Union could affect the economy to such an extent that it plunges us into recession and materially impact the quality of life of the whole population.
Then again, it might do totally the reverse!
Recently I was in Cambridge and went to the American Cemetery.
It is an amazing memorial to over 3000 service personnel buried there who perished in WWII and with a further memorial of more than 5,000 names of those lost.
There is an amazing chapel in the grounds where you are invited to go in and pray to God.
But what is remarkable is how one whole wall is taken up with a map of Europe showing all the main campaigns and placing of the opposing forces during WWII.
It isn’t in the visitors centre, but in the chapel. It is a meeting of faith with politics so that as you reflect on the violence and politics of opposing forces that led to the deaths of so many and devastated the whole of Europe and across the world you can bring your thoughts, emotions and prayers to God.
For those of us with faith, as well as for those of no faith the decisions over the coming months are going to have far reaching implications for us and for the whole world.
We may not be directly involved in the next USA President but we are, in the fate of our relationship across Europe.
We need to consider very carefully how we vote and for those of us with faith we need to pray, and pray seriously.
God is also the God of politics!