I struggle with politics.  What I mean is that I believe in the whole idea of free speech, and I appreciate the gift of living in a country that allows us to each vote and speak our minds.  I love that about the life we have here in America.  We appreciate our freedom of speech, don’t we?  Most recently, when I read that Max Lucado had spoken out for decency and faith, I saw that many sent him horrible messages. They were angry and acted like Lucado didn’t have a right to share his thoughts.  Why?  Because he’s a pastor!  Does my line of work determine whether I have the right to speak up?  If I share what comes from my own heart, isn’t that the right we protect in our constitution?   The way I understand it, we all have the right to speak, at least that’s the way I read that freedom of speech thing.

Political campaigns remind me of the old show on TV called The Dating Game.  The way the show was set up, one person, let’s say a female, was to choose a date from three males that she could not see behind a screen. She would ask pertinent questions to each contender.  After rounds  of questions, she would choose the one guy she wanted for a date. When the guy finally came around the screen and she saw him face to face, you could tell sometimes that he was nothing like she expected.  It feels to me like that’s what happens in politics.  We  have a scorecard, listen to lots of opinions, and try to choose who to date for the next four years.  The problem is that we can be fooled because we listen for what we want to hear, rather than listening to what is being said.  We let our emotions and our imaginations have more sway with our choice, than truth or reality can put together.  The Dating Game and any other show, like those we call “Reality” TV, don’t give us truth.  They simply give us entertainment.

I have to side with Dave Ramsey a bit today and suggest that no one person can fix what is going on in America or the world.  We each are part of the fixing.  If we take responsibility for our choices, we can make a difference.  I’m saying this more about personal choice than political choice.  We have to choose to be advocates for the greater good.  We choose because we have a real sense of what it means to live in God’s grace and mercy and love.  We choose because we are willing and able to become part of the solution.  A great politician can make you believe nearly anything.  A great businessman can cause you to think the world revolves on a dime.  But the only great person in the mix of your choices is YOU.  You have to rise to greatness.  You have to stand for what you believe.  I applaud Max Lucado and Dave Ramsey and others who speak from their own hearts as voices of reason and wisdom.  I applaud each one who makes it a goal to listen with a heart for wisdom and truth.  Whatever we do, we have to have faith in our choices, a sense of knowing that comes to us in prayer.  As the old saying goes, we have to stand for something or we’ll fall for anything.  Let’s be wise in our choices or we may be in for a long, unhappy date.