Some of you may know that I have a keen interest in politics both here in the UK and also in the US. So I have to admit that I stayed up until the early hours to watch as the results of the American election came in. It quickly became clear that just like in 2016 the polls had been very wrong, and the result was likely to be much closer than anyone expected. In fact as I write this there is still no official winner, although the vast majority of the media have crowned Joe Biden as the victor. Should this result be verified, we might ask what comes next? Joe Biden has stated his desire for healing and unity, words which resonate with us as Gods people, as we follow the prince of peace.
However, warm words need to be followed up by actions, and overcoming the deep divisions that have been laid bare
during the last four years and the election itself is likely to be a herculean task. In this age of social media and partisan journalism that sense of tribalism has overwhelmed gracious debate, with each group convinced they alone are in the right and entirely unable to accept any dissenting view. Although the involvement of some Christian leaders in the US election has been controversial, there is no doubt that politics, like every other sector of society, needs people of faith actively applying Gods word, to seek real justice, compassion, and wisdom in the mechanisms of government.
I was fortunate enough to have our local MP as a member of the congregation of my previous parish, so I know something of both the pressures and the opportunities such a role provides. Perhaps most of all, the current state of politics on both sides of the Atlantic remind us how important it is to pray for our leaders, our governments, and especially Christians who are elected representatives, that they may be guided by the Spirit as they work out their calling in these fractious and divided days.