Even as President Barack Obama celebrates being re-elected, it's clear he faces the monumental task of leading a deeply divided nation. Though the president won a decisive number of the electoral votes, the popular vote told a different story. Voters split their ballots nearly evenly between the candidates: 50 percent for Obama, 48 percent for Mitt Romney.
As pastors sit down to write their Sunday sermons, many will be mulling the stark division in our nation. They will encounter feelings of relief and anxiety, hope and despair, apathy and anger—sometimes in the same congregation. We asked several pastors to share the gist of the message they will be preaching in light of the election results. We hope their insights will help you as you prepare for Sunday.
John Ortberg, Menlo Park Presbyterian Church: This Sunday I will give a call of prayer for our country and its leadership, and a call for civility in political conversations. Romney supporters: don't despair. Obama supporters: don't gloat. Remember, the office that matters most has already been permanently filled with a God of eternal omni-competence.
Andy Stanley, North Point Community Church: I decided to address the election in a podcast rather than a sermon. As we make personal and political decisions, we should never attempt to legislate the behavior of people who don't share our worldview. Criticizing others over their beliefs pushes them away. It's more important to make a difference than a point, and we've all seen people with opposing beliefs come together to make a difference. We must be willing to risk our credibility for the sake of influencing others. Don't take a stand on every hot-button issue. Jesus refused to answer questions that would damage his influence ...