Today, I have been checked on. Several times, a co-worker or friend has asked me, "Are you okay?" Both times, at first I didn't realize what they meant. Then I remembered that today we have a new president-elect, and I had cast my vote for The Other Guy.
But today, mostly I have been at peace. Riled up for weeks, but today, at peace.
This passage from Scripture has steered, cheered, and set my heart straight. Take a look.
"Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another..." Romans 13, NIV
If you are like me, you probably believed that by living in a democracy, we, the people would be determining our next President by our votes. But did we?
There is no authority except that which God has established. This is a profound truth! And mindboggling for my political mind to accept. There is no authority, no President, no Congressman, no Governor in existence that God did not establish.
The New King James Version puts it this way: "Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. " (Romans 13:1)
I imagine that some of you take issue (even Scriptural issue) with the results of some of the election races. But we are told that God, for reasons that are His, has established the governmental authorities that we will live under. This applies to our new President-elect, Barack Obama. This also applies to President Bush, to his predecessor President Clinton, and even for those who live in Venezuela, Hugo Chavez. Please remember that when the New Testament was written, many Christians lived under governments that were hostile to their faith, and shortly thereafter, early Christians were fed to lions in the Roman Coliseum.
Nevertheless, even these authorities were put in place by God.
He is God. We do not have to understand His mind or His ways. But we do have the privilege of resting in His Sovereignty, especially on the day after Election Day.