Eighteen is the age Canadian citizens may vote in federal elections. If you are following the news you will note that there are stirrings of a federal election this fall. Leaders are starting to run around jockeying for position by reminding us what they think as well as what their opponents thinks. Although it does not seem like it at times, we are a democratic country in which individual voters should make a difference. God has allowed men and women to govern us and we can choose who they will be with our vote. However, we vote knowing that we do not look to the leaders of our country to cause people to go to church or pray or share the Good News; only God can affect our relationship with Him. We vote because we obey the choice God made to give us these leaders.
Do you remember when God was KING over all His people and everyone was happy about that arrangement; probably not? The book of 1 Samuel 8:5 records an event that took place sometime between 1200-930 BC. All the elders of Israel approached Samuel and asked to be ruled by a King. They wanted to be like their neighbours even thought they knew about their cruelty. They wanted to be like the world around them. God allowed this to happen and told Samuel, “it is not about you, but it is about me”. The people were not rejecting Samuel but were rejecting God and thus began the arrangement of God allowing ruling authorities to exist. In the early stages of this arrangement God was involved in the selection via prophets but soon He was set aside both in process and thereafter, in the lives of the people. Many had confused their earthly time with human leaders as being more important than eternity with God.
We have never been a Christian nation but a nation where Christians live. People coast to coast have never been unified in their efforts to please God. The bible has had some influence on the laws and regulations of this country but it has never been the moral compass of this nation. The will of the people serves in place of the will of God. However ruling leaders cannot change our relationship with God. They can facilitate the ease in which we express our faith or they can make it difficult. They cannot force it on us and, more importantly, they cannot take our faith away from us. Every one of the 6 billion plus people walking this planet freely chooses whether God is King of the life they live in this world ruled by men and women. People often moan that our country started to go down hill when we took prayer out of school. Our leaders stopped us from praying at school but they could not stop us from praying. However, if prayer was not in our homes, it did not matter that it was removed from school. Men and women govern this country but Jesus should govern our lives.
Canada is focused on trying to make everyone happy and although that appears to be a good thing, it means allowing our hedonistic desires to dictate what is right for all Canadians. God may not sit in parliament but He is King never the less and can still have an impact on this nation. The first Monday in August has been set aside in many provinces and territories to remember their heritage. Civic events are planned and it is a time when provinces and territories focus inwards and celebrate what is good about themselves. I propose that we exercise our right to focus our efforts and prayers on our nation for the next 18 days. Here are some suggested prayers for our leaders and our country that we offer over the next 18 days. I propose we bring each leader before God and ask that He change them. I propose we ask God to open the hearts and minds of those leaders who do not know Jesus as Saviour and reveal the truth so that they too can know the hope that is in Christ. I propose we remember our King allowed these men and women to govern us and that we respect God’s decision by covering the leaders in prayer.
We can change this nation and its people one prayer at a time.