With the general elections coming up on the 3rd August 2016 there is a lot of talk around braais with regards to what party one will vote for.
It’s always interesting in my engagements how many times I find that people are so sure who they will vote for but not because of anything that constitutes a well-researched opinion. For the most part, it’s an emotional decision, usually based on one’s colour and not so much on what each party offers the constituency.
But what does the word of God call us to do?
While it’s true that voting is not something that is demanded by God, we are called to be active citizens in the communities that we live – but what does that mean?
For many people, and definitely those that leave comments on News24, being active citizens usually means complaining and tearing down the opposition. However, there are other ways:
Before your x marks the spot where you pledge your allegiance, take time to educate yourself. Make a decision based on a party that resonates with that which is important to you. What does your party stand for other than “the liberation of a black collective” or “safety amongst the white brethren”? What is their stance on education, religion, abortion and land reform? Delving into party manifestos may surprise you as you realise that you have more in common with the ACDP than the DA or ANC.
“Delving into party manifestos may surprise you…”
Nothing beats a thoughtful and prayerful vote. Take the time to come before God and place the future of this great nation at His feet. When you avail yourself to Him and allow Him to use you as a vessel for His will to be done, voting becomes more than a national duty – it becomes part of your ministry and your testimony. Furthermore, the Bible calls us to pray for the leaders of this country – whether or not you voted them into power.
Our duties do not end when we walk out of the voting booth – it is only the beginning. The way I see it, when we place that vote, we are pledging ourselves to be partners with the powers that be and aligning ourselves with other like-minded South Africans in building up the nation. If we take the time to look around, there are many ways that we can get involved – community initiatives that not only alleviate the load of the government but make our day to day living that much more meaningful.
So, as we approach the local government elections allow me to put out this cliché – ask not what the country can do for you, but take time to think what you can do for this country. Only then will you vote with a heart for the country and a vision for the future.