|Screenshot of https://www.elections.ca/content2.aspx?section=can&document=index&lang=e|
It feels like we just went through this time of year: a slight chill in the breeze, the threat/promise of Pumpkin Spice Everything, the eagerness of getting ready to wear boots again...
And, as per normal every 4 years or so, the shade of the political posturing.
Despite the federal election being called just days ago, the campaigning has begun.
I, for one, tend to look forward to times such as these. As a political animal, with a degree in Political Science, I'm quite keen for folks to develop and present platforms on issues and concerns to the people. I sit prepared, aiming for an open heart and mind, for the door-to-door visits where I can raise my carefully crafted questions around issues of justice (not of the penal code variety) and goodwill for all. I track polls, I watch the results with my election buddy (oh, the commentary!)... I am an engaged citizen in the electoral process. My vote matters!
Yet... this election, even in the infancy of the campaign, we're seeing some serious mud-slinging. There's trash-talking on all sides; there are personal attacks and snide remarks and cruel intentions... and it appears that it will continue on this low-road of a path for the duration of the campaign.
So what's a church-going, God-loving, Christ-following person to do?
Not to get our own ways, or to have our preferred candidate win. Not to have "our" Party dig up more dirt on "their" Party; not to hope for a faux-pas in a debate, not for any ill-wlll.
But we pray with thanksgiving for a democratic society that allows for every citizen (of age) to vote. We express gratitude for civil discourse on difficult topics. We recognise the personal challenges that every candidate is undergoing, and the hardships on their families; so we ask for God to bless all of the candidates, all of their families and friends, their staff, their neighbours. We ask for travelling mercies for the campaign trail.
And we pray that the will of God will be reflected in the votes of the people. We pray for our country, for responsible citizenship, and for an election: "Lord, keep this nation under your care. Bless the leaders of our land, that we may be a people at peace among ourselves and a blessing to other nations of the earth. Help us elect trustworthy leaders, contribute to wise decisions for the general welfare, and thus serve you faithfully in our generation to the honour of your holy name; through Jesus Christ our Lord." (BAS, 678)