The election blog you’ve been waiting for – #TrumpClinton

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voting in North Carolina

Okay, friends, it’s time you learned how I believe you should vote in this 2016 presidential race. I filled out my ballot just a couple of hours ago, and I’d love to offer a little more of my two-cents-worth before things finally come to a head and wrap up on election day.

First, Rebekah and I voted today – Saturday – because she’s in far too much pain to try and brave the lines Tuesday. So we headed out to the early voting location at Rolesville. But we quickly discovered the lines were wrapped around the building and beyond.

So I eased my VW into “curbside voting.” No, I didn’t have a handicapped sticker. But I do have a wife who absolutely could not vote any other way, and the kind people in charge allowed us to go through regardless. Because here in America nothing should stand between someone prepared to vote, and access to the ballot.

HOW TO VOTE?

So how did I vote? Other than, “thoughtfully, prayerfully, and carefully,” I think the best answer to that is to reference the good conversation I had with the Wednesday evening men’s Bible study at WFPC this week.

My friend Ray – who always tends to be deeply thoughtful in his responses – quoted from a recent exchange around the philosophy of Aristotle. “Self mastery demands an acceptance of human nature and natural law,” he read, “a hope for goodness by forming one’s will toward the transcendent, and enough humility and mercy to work toward the common good.”

The point was about the clear need in leadership for well developed moral character. It’s unclear from the transcript if the quote is from Aristotle, or from someone in the thread. But Aristotle did state –  in Nicomachean Ethics II.9 – that it is not easy to define in rules which actions deserve moral praise and blame, and (importantly) that discernment in these matters requires the judgment of “the virtuous person.”

Virtue, then, is a critically important asset, both in leadership and in exercising  judgment in selecting the right leaders.

VIRTUE:

Virtue is variously defined. But most explanations fall around the following: “morally good behavior or character; the good result that comes from something; the beneficial power or quality of a thing; the capacity to act.”

What we want in our leaders, what we need in our leaders, is an abundance of virtue. Virtue that goes beyond upstanding moral character, and goes so far as the capacity to act, to effect change with beneficial power.

This was what stood at the front of my mind when I perused, and then carefully marked, my ballot earlier today. America is hungry for a new crop of leaders who are committed to heading to Washington (and the statehouse, and city hall) for the purpose of virtuous action, in the context of “hope for goodness by forming [their] will toward the transcendent, and enough humility and mercy to work toward the common goal.”

HUMILITY & MERCY:

As a committed Christian, and an intentional disciple of Jesus, I find myself deeply interested in the “humility and mercy” aspect of the exercise of leadership. Because we live in a culture that tends to eschew humility as weakness, and laugh at mercy for the same reason.

As a committed Christian, and an intentional disciple of Jesus, I find myself deeply interested in the “humility and mercy” aspect of the exercise of leadership. Because we live in a culture that tends to eschew humility as weakness, and laugh at mercy for the same reason.

The office of POTUS – president of the United States – is the most powerful political position in the world. We have the capacity to control the economy of the nations, to heal – or to destroy – most of the planet, to offer hope – or despair, to create peace – or war, to feed the world’s hungry – or to let them starve. If ever there was an office that requires the counterpoint of goodness, humility, and mercy, and of forming our will to the transcendent (God), then POTUS is that office.

So I will conclude this hopefully thought-provoking and informative post with the following words about leadership from Jesus:

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Derek Maul

Then they began to argue among themselves about who would be the greatest among them. Jesus told them, “In this world the kings and great men lord it over their people, yet they are called ‘friends of the people.’ But among you it will be different. Those who are the greatest among you should take the lowest rank, and the leader should be like a servant. Who is more important, the one who sits at the table or the one who serves? The one who sits at the table, of course. But not here! For I am among you as one who serves.” Luke 22:24-27

Vote thoughtfully, prayerfully, and carefully, my friends – DEREK

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