• engaGE19

Our political system is being shaken - but don't switch off

I was recently re-reading the early chapters of Genesis and was struck yet again by the fact that we serve an amazing God. In His omniscience and grace He created men and women made in His image “to rule with Him and for Him.”

There is so much richness of meaning in these passages. The dignity and preciousness of being human, made as God’s image bearers means that our dignity and worth does not come from outside ourselves, but comes from being created by God. All human life from its beginning to its natural end is precious and valuable. The unborn baby, the person facing death, those with a disability, the trafficked woman and child, the abused and homeless, not to mention the unlovely. In reflecting God’s image to a fallen world there are both privileges and responsibilities, as has been written in another place “how then shall we live?”

I confess to being one of those strange people fascinated by the events of recent months. The twists and turns of the Brexit debate; the inability of political pundits with years of experience to predict day to day, let alone moment by moment, what will happen has captivated my attention. It reads like a novel and, if it were not so serious, intellectually it has been fascinating.

Yet we are aware of a darker side. Politics has become even more nasty. The number of MPs especially women standing down in this election because of appalling harassment together with the public perception of MPs being self serving ambitious rather than those working for the good of the nation leaves a nasty taste. Our political system is being shaken.

How do we react? My fear is that we switch off, retreat into our areas of safety and fail to be involved. This may simply be because we don’t know how to. That is why I am so excited by and passionately believe that CARE’s website engaGE19 will help us all cast our votes wisely. Going down the route of retreat is dangerous and dare I say wrong? It leaves a vacuum which may be filled by dangerous forces.

As God’s people we are called to work for the good of our cities. The Creation Mandate to “rule over the world with me and for me” is an enormous privilege but also a command. We cannot let ignorance or even apathy dictate how we behave. There are still many good men and women, both Christian and others, seeking to serve their constituents to the best of their ability. We must pray for them, care for them, support them and vote.

In past elections CARE used the tag line “Make the Cross Count”. Of course there is a double meaning here the cross on the ballot sheet but also the hope which the cross of Christ brings to a hurting, broken world. As God’s people we have a better story to tell as we uphold God’s standards of justice and truth for our Nation. We dare not fail to make our cross count on Election Day.

Nola Leach

Chief Executive of CARE