Today was an historic day in this country. Major healthcare legislation was passed. This legislation has been highly polarizing, meaning that you are thrilled or dejected, excited or fearful, energized or overwhelmed. I rarely talk about politics here, because faith isn’t about joining a political party.
This is the lesson the disciples had a hard time understanding. The disciples fully believed Jesus was going to reign as a new David-like King. That he was going to kick the Romans out, free the Jews from oppression, and make them world players.
They were so wrong.
Sounds a lot like today, huh?
A lot of people are terrified of this legislation because it threatens their way of life. They see healthcare “reform” as bankrupting the country. Almost certainly changing America’s standing as a world power. And, according to some, may not actually improve healthcare at all. Ironically it may make it worse.
So they are upset. They are fearful. And they are angry.
That’s why I wanted to talk about this today. This is an important conversation. The stakes are high. If we don’t act today, we may be doomed. But the stakes aren’t for what most of us think. We aren’t playing for healthcare; we are playing for something much more important. We are playing for the Kingdom and eternity. Unfortunately most of us don’t keep that in mind as we respond to the passing political whims of the day. We get caught up in the excitement and the emotion, and we forget where our true loyalties must lie.
When we belong to the Kingdom, we play by different rules. And no matter what happens, we need to live by those rules. Not by what makes our lives easier or more comfortable. That’s the radical and revolutionary nature of God.
Even if healthcare reform is worse than all those predictions – it is nothing compared to what believers have experienced through the centuries. It is nothing compared to Daniel being thrown to the lions, or Paul being thrown in jail, or the early Christians in Rome being burned alive.
We are called to live by Kingdom standards no matter what’s happening to us in the world at large.
This holds true for people who love the healthcare bill too.
Don’t think this is a post just for Republicans. This is a post for Democrats as well. If you are thrilled by the legislation, where is your faith? Is it in government reform? Or God?
Is healthcare reform good or bad? That’s not for me to say. That’s for political pundits to discuss. What I’m concerned about is living out a life of faith. And it seems to me that no matter which political party we belong to, we are all too quick to throw God under the bus. We’re all too ready to live our lives without him. We are quick to put our hopes into political parties, wealth, or our intelligence.
Thousands of years later, we make the same mistakes the disciples did – we root for the wrong Kingdom.
photo provided by flickr user boliston