The Election and My Vote

If you live in the United States in 2016, you can hardly take a trip to the water cooler without being asked, "Who are you going to vote for?" Even interested individuals and commentators in other countries cannot keep from expressing their views on the topic, even though their stake in the election is zero. If you have been involved in previous presidential elections, you may have experienced what is called buyer's remorse – the regret that comes from hopes and expectations unrealized, and maybe worse, revulsion for your former choice for president.

For those who ever did, or are currently looking for a life partner, the experience of choosing a mate is even more important and complicated. Not only is there internal struggle and pressure about making the right decision, there are a multitude of additional individuals making commentary, suggestions, and warnings. The pressure to avoid "buyer's remorse" is already internalized in you, but the added voices and opinions of those you already have relationships with, create additional mental conflict and angst. The big question is, "Can I live with this person for the rest of my life?"

The "escape clause" for selecting the wrong president can be realized in four – or at the most eight – years, unless there is an impeachment. The implications to me for selecting the wrong spouse are much more personal, expensive, and heart-rending. Anyone who has gone through or watched a divorce knows that it is like a very slow-motion plane crash. Moreover, the "escape clause" for selecting the wrong spouse is either a lifetime, or a divorce.

If when I get to heaven and after a million years decide I cannot live in the same universe with God, where am I going to go? What if after a million years God says He cannot live in the same universe with me? Where will He go? Or what will He do with me? These questions point to the fact that both God and I must be sure that we trust each other enough to be able to live together in harmony for all eternity. If there is to be "buyer's remorse" or a "divorce" between God and myself, it must occur before we begin our relationship journey for eternity. In fact, the Election Decision – My Vote – is being cast every day as I build the relationship of love and trust needed to last for eternity.

Dennis Hollingsead works in the Office of Development at Andrews University.

Image credit: James Bokovoy / NAD

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This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at http://spectrummagazine.org/node/7667

Democrat or Republican nominees running for 2016 U.S.A President worship the ground the white House has coming to them. In politics the White House is constantly between two evils. After one elected in the oval office. Stupidity is not a handicap. It doesn’t matter. Win or lose in 4 years. He’s or she’s bought stays bought. The two evils: Trump or Hillary. It’s all for money.

The man or woman about to marry. Don’t marry for money. You can borrow it cheaper.

Election and Marriage. Experience is what you get when you didn’t get what you wanted.

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Thank you, Dennis. The title caught my attention but the point of the article is so much more important to seriously consider. Wonderful devotion for a Sabbath evening.

Foremost, it is important to remember that we live in a society where our government is a representative government. If you pull the lever for someone, you are giving that person your proxy to function on your behalf. It is never a situation for which you will be in 100% agreement, but, sometimes it isn’t enough to just empower the lesser of two evils. Sometimes one choice is so perverse that it must be stopped at all costs, regardless of the alternative choice. We are definitely at that crossroad in this election.

C.S. Lewis wrote about “the Great Sin”. “The essential vice, the utmost evil, is Pride. Unchasttity, anger, greed, drunkenness, and all that, are mere flea bites in comparison: It was through Pride that the devil became the devil. Pride leads to every other vice; it is the complete anti-God state of mind.” Johnathan Edwards wrote: “Pride is the main handle by which Satan holds a person, and is the chief source of mischief.” Narcissism is simply another word for pride that has overtaken an individual. It’s the first sin and the one God hates the most.

Even secular society describes a person who is overcome with their own vanity and Narcissism as not just being out of the norm, but has risen to a point of a “disorder”. The Characteristics described in the DSM-V sum it up. See if you can plug in one of the candidates actions into this qualifications list of a Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Remember, you only need to check off five of these to qualify a person as a Narcissistic Personality Disorder.

  1. Grandiosity
  2. Preoccupation with fantasies of success, power and brilliance
  3. Believes that they are “so special”
  4. Requires excessive admiration
  5. Has a sense of entitlement
  6. Takes advantage of others to achieve their own ends
  7. Lacks empathy for others
  8. Is super-sensitive to criticism
  9. Attacks anyone who criticizes them

Pride and Self-absorption are deadly sins because “we make good creatures, but lousy Gods.” Anonymous.

Don’t let your longstanding party loyalties stand in the way of doing the morally correct thing.

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I never hear Jesus wondering if he can trust someone. He came to seek and to save the lost. He carries the lost lamb on his shoulders. Nothing can separate us from his love. We have hope. We have confidence. We have assurance. Neither Father, Son, nor Holy Spirit has commitment issues. So the Gospel really is Good News.

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Salvation is invitational, We elect or chose either to accept the invitation or reject it. God’s invitation is universal. our response is personal. God never changes His mind, but He allows us to reject the life giver an thus ultimently life itself. In accepting Him He sends His Spirit to let us grow in His likeness of mercy and generosity. We don’t withdrawn we become involved in a healing ministry of compassion born of Grace. Tom z

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Lynden Williams, as I checked over the list to qualify a person with a Narcissistic Personality Disorder, I observed that both presidential candidates have at least five of these qualities. Unfortunately, it’s too late to start over, so we’ll just have to hold our noses and vote. My only comfort is the fact that God is in control.

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Dennis, how confident are you that any one can interact with God in such a way that we come to know enough of each other well enough to trust that we, God and I, can live together in harmony for eternity?

If we are dependent on God’s benevolence, God’s grace for eternal life, we are not autonomous. And if we are not autonomous, we can not in any way of our own provide for our salvation, including vote for it, it seems.

Paul believes that Jesus saves us while we were actively, relentlessly, not just voting against him, but trying to destroy him. Perhaps Paul is generalizing from an autobiographical experience. God indeed reached out to Paul on the way to Damascus while Paul was on a mission to violently oppose Jesus.

Considering Jesus knocked Paul off his animal, blinded him for several days, and then revealed himself to Paul, it is clear that Paul didn’t think his way to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ. And if Paul couldn’t, can any of us?

Along that line, there is Peter. When Peter confessed to Jesus that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, Jesus declared that Peter, even after being in the very presence of Jesus for nearly 3 years could not have thought to ‘vote’ for Jesus on his own. Jesus said to Peter after Peter declared Jesus to be the ‘the Christ, the Son of the Living God’: ‘Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.’

What if it is true, the only vote that counts for each person’s eternal life is the living, dying, living vote of Jesus Christ?

It seems so.

Especially in light of Jesus having specifically observed that if it were up to Peter, Peter would never have figured out with his own flesh and blood to vote for Jesus as Jesus.

Surely we cannot, then.

This does not mean we cannot respond to Jesus, but what if even that response is not of our selves? After all, Paul tells the Philippians that ‘it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure’.

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actually, people from canada feel they have a huge stake in november’s american election - election trivia is on the news each and every night…many people feel trump will repeal NAFTA and plunge canada into recession…many people also believe trump will take away the american military shield canada now enjoys, or make canada pay something in exchange for protection…some people feel trump will try to steal canada’s arctic rights, and perhaps some of its water…

on balance,most canadians probably prefer hillary, since she’s a known factor, and widely admired…the three most important provinces in canada are now run by women, one of whom is a lesbian…the feeling is that hillary will be naturally compatible with each of these premiers, and that the chill opened up between obama and prime minister harper will completely heal between hillary and prime minister trudeau…many people believe she’ll ultimately approve the keystone pipeline, regardless of what she has to say to get elected…everyone i know believes NAFTA will be safe under her, since bill ratified it with prime minister mulroney…and every survey i’ve seen indicates that canadians believe hillary will be much more hawkish than obama with ISIS, and that the gun problem and mass shootings in america will be controlled under her…i think a lot of canadians also believe she’ll push for stronger national healthcare, and perhaps coordinate a plan with canada’s…

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That made me laugh! In the company where I work, I would NEVER hear that question at the water cooler. I don’t know if it is out of politeness, or because I work in an industry where everyone assumes that everyone else around them is voting for the same candidate.

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Hillary Clinton extensive government experience for her presidential candidacy is not a rationale. Clinton’s hopes her long proximity to the presidency, her years as secretary of state and her two Senate terms put her in a dominant position compared to Trump, who has no government experience.

A look back at history shows that lengthy experience in government hardly guarantees a magnificent presidency. Not even a good one. In fact, some of the worst presidents have been extremely qualified for the position.

James Buchanan the lengthiest governmental resume of anyone ran for president. A Pennsylvania state legislator, then a member of the U.S. House and, later, the U.S. Senate. He also served as U.S. ambassador to Russia and Britain, and as secretary of state. When he finally received the Democratic presidential nomination in 1856, he was 65, the second-oldest man to run for president up to that time. His backers emphasized his vast experience, especially when compared with that of his main opponent, John Fremont of the newly founded Republican Party.

Buchanan won in a walkaway, but his presidency was a disaster from the beginning.

James Buchanan and Richard Nixon were the worst presidents, but hardly the only one whose deficiencies manifested in office boasted extensive resume of government experience.

Hillary Clinton is another far from miracle.

Our best-known and most beloved presidents entered office with fairly scant resumes. Consider George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt. While Washington had little opportunity to have a governmental resume - though he did lead the Continental Congress and the Continental Army - Lincoln and FDR had bare minimums. Lincoln had a few terms in the early Illinois legislature and one term in Congress, but he famously lost his run for Senate against Douglas and fell short in trying to become Fremont’s vice presidential running mate in 1856. FDR had one term as a state senator and another as governor of New York, but was also an electoral loser - in a Senate primary and, in 1920, as a vice presidential candidate.

It is true that these three faced some of the greatest crises in the nation’s history, so their presidential skills had the best chance of a grand result, each still succeeded in performing those executive miracles. They did not need to hark back to some experience in the legislature or a foreign mission to decide what to do. They relied instead on their personalities and their leadership skills.

Donald Trump is a coming soon miracle?

Hillary Clinton has an impressive resume of government service. Her experience may help her win the White House, it doesn’t tell us much about how great a president she would be once she got there.

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In Israel inorder to be a realist you must believe in miracles. Americans are realist, divisive, difficult, to Clinton or Trump running for the highest office of both wishy-washy persons unqualified. Like the jews have a secret weapon in their struggle with the Arabs; they have no place to go. The irony is…Americans have a place to go…CANADA! Americans are always welcomed with open arms after November’s election. :heart_eyes:

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Indeed. If experience was a prerequisite then the constitutional requirements for president would have included it.
Interesting that is another point of hypocrisy of the democrats. They sang the no experienced needed song for Obama who was a community organizer and ineffective and inexperienced senator. But of course now thats not the tune they sing. Now they are telling everyone that Hillary is the most qualified candidate to ever run for the presidency.
Also interesting in that the entire country was moved more than ever before to choose an outsider candidate, a veritable repudiation of status quo, whether Trump or Sanders, yet they think her status as perpetual political operative and insider is what the country wants.

Washington,D.C. is where Hillary Clinton more than 30 years political conniving career cover her crimes by making them legal. Familiarity breeds ATTEMPT She has her fists clenching in the cooky jar continues legalized her thievery. Hillary is like buying oats for a dead horse. Hillary has to go!

The Christian Right now has unprecedented access to power in the U.S.

And many of them are theocrats who believe in male headship and authoritarian Chain of Command.

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Hillary is a deeply spiritual woman who travels with her marked Bible and draws strength from it as a deeply committed Christian. Are you aware of her Methodist upbringing and values from Wesley? Her speech to concede showed her magnanimity in the situation as opposed to her opponent whose rude “nasty woman” and worse, such as never admitting to ever have asked for forgiveness, is definitely un-Christlike.

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[quote=“harrpa, post:16, topic:11856”]
Hillary is a deeply spiritual woman who travels with her marked Bible and draws strength from it as a deeply committed Christian. Are you aware of her Methodist upbringing and values from Wesley?

No church going politician has exclusive patent rights to immunity to sins though Hillary Clinton deeply spiritual deeply committed Christian who travels with a marked Bible. The heralded Hillary Clinton can fool too many people much of the time travels with her mark Bible. In her 35 years political career she demonstrated exclusive patent rights on prosperity. Appointed as US Secretary of State, today her demised as elect US President, today retired for good in US politics, wings clipped a fallen angel from no sufficient character to resist temptations. Yes, politics had been a lucrative 35 years career. Yes, she succeeded in many self-served rewards. Yes, she disgrace herself she can always write a book. A Best Seller - ‘The right person, in the right place, at the right time - can steal millions.’

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Who are you to judge?

I am not a judge…God is. God will forgive Hillary Clinton. That’s His business.

I agree on your disagreement . Who am I to judge you? Your Christian values of merciful of good news and of confident narrative as you put it, “Hillary is a deeply spiritual woman who travels with her marked Bible and draws strength from it as a deeply committed Christian. Are you aware of her Methodist upbringing and values from Wesley?

Who am I to judge Hillary Clinton.

Every woman for herself and God for us all.

Injustice is relatively easy to bear; what stings is justice.

Let Kindness begets Kindness.

I wish her well. Best wishes to her continuing benevolent, merciful, passion to The Clinton Foundation. She continues to hold an umbrella over a duck in a shower of rain.