We have friends of the family who were dismayed by the fact that their daughter (now in her early 30’s) has never voted. Truthfully, we were a bit shocked as well. How does anyone not vote? She might be the only person we actually know that doesn’t vote.  For us, both sets of parents taught us that voting was a civic responsibility. It was an action worthy of undertaking. So we vote.  We’re pretty sure that neither one of us has missed voting since we started in the mid-70s.  One of us now votes by mail (and has confirmed that the vote was accepted and then tabulated.) The other votes in person early.
It’s been said that… “Those who vote ought to have a good reason for the way they vote; and those of us who do not vote should likewise have a very good reason for not going to the polls.” Last week’s reflections on cultural values, the question posed in the sermon yesterday and this quote got me thinking, not so much about who I vote for or what amendments I vote for, as much as about the “ way and the reasons I vote” for or against.  Now the Financial Times or was it Barron’s perhaps it could have even been IBD tells us that the main reason to vote the way one does is based solely on economic factors. They report that it’s based on how one will best benefit financially.  But there are other foundational factors as well.  There is strong evidence to suggest that it’s centered more on cultural issues. Interestingly, a recent study by MIT Sloan School of Management says the way or reason one votes the way they do depends on one’s unhappiness. We might suggest that it’s a combination of many factors.
We don’t need to encourage you to vote because we know that you will or already have voted. Our invitation is to ponder the foundational reasons why you vote the way you do.  It’s not about who; it’s about the why and it is purely intended for self-reflection.

Scripture Reading: 1 John 4:1
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

Reflection Questions:
When was the first time you voted?
What are the reasons you vote the way you do?
What helps you make important decisions?

Prayer:  Holy God, hear my gratitude for living in this country. Remind me that I have responsibility to shine light and let me continue caring for the “least of these.” Amen.

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