Praying for the U.S. Election
“Do not put your trust in princes, in mortals in whom there is no help. When their breath departs, they will return to the earth; on that very day their plans perish. Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob, who hope is in YHWH their God, who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them; who keeps faith forever; who executes justice for the oppressed; who gives food to the hungry.” - Psalm 146:3-7
Today is the U.S. election. It is a very charged and divisive time in U.S. politics. Having moved to Canada, I now understand what many of my fellow Americans don’t: U.S. politics reverberate internationally.
Democracy is unique in the history of the world: the people have some say in who their leaders are. How do we pray for elections like this? We can pray that voters will believe true information and have the wisdom to reject falsehoods. We can pray that Americans would set aside their self-centered views about their vote and care about the impact their vote has on the lives of others. We can pray that people will be able to exercise their right to vote and those seeking to prevent them would be thwarted. We can pray for peace at polling centers and that those with violence in their hearts would lay down their weapons. We can pray for a clear outcome today. We can also pray to God with our personal convictions, and longings for the outcome, because the Psalms teach us that we can pray anything to God. May God’s peace, which surpasses all understanding guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus.
In the end, no matter who wins, God remains the same. As Psalm 146 says, God keeps faith forever, loving creation, executing justice for the oppressed and giving food to the hungry. (The list of God’s mighty acts of justice in Psalm 146 is even longer. I encourage you to read it!) Regardless of who wins the U.S. election, we will still be called—as followers of Jesus—to participate with God in these things. Let us pray for wisdom for our neighbours to the south, and be willing to participate with God in the redemption of the world whether the next U.S. President makes that easier or harder.
May God bless you and keep you,
May God’s face shine upon you and give you peace,