‘The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know. Pray especially for rulers and their governments to rule well so we can be quietly about our business of living simply, in humble contemplation. This is the way our Savior God wants us to live’ –1 Timothy:1-3 (The Message).
Remember the guy who wrote ‘All I really need to know I learned in kindergarten’? I want him to run our government. After reading a newspaper article this week that we shouldn’t expect Congress to accomplish much when they return from their vacation and before they break in August, it doesn’t take a genius to realize our nation’s leaders need a sanity check. We pay them more than most of us who actually have to accomplish tasks on a daily basis make. Why do we put up with their political tantrums and pouting? How have we made it okay for them to collect their sizable paychecks and yet not improve our country or move it forward for months at a time? Why are we not firing them during elections and hiring people who might actually play nice together and work toward the common good? Why do we not insist on laws for term limits so that ‘politician’ ceases as a career path. Our forefathers created our government with the idea that politics should never become an elitist occupation. So, how do we-the-people take back our power in government? By voting.
I would vote for a few teachers. Those teachers who have won awards and have proven that they know how to handle students who have given up. The teachers who inspire movies and believe our nation still has so much untapped potential. The teachers who won’t allow Congress to just limp along, content with living far away from the constituents who voted them into office. Teachers who would hold government accountable to focus on the good of the country and not the schoolyard scuffles of politics. Teachers who haven’t stopped learning and respect the wisdom that youth bring to the table.
I would vote for a few business managers who have pulled their companies out of the landfill and created work environments that encourage productivity because they remember real people work for them and not just automatons. Small business owners who sacrifice their own comforts to make payroll every month deserve some recognition in government–those bosses who understand the lives of their employees and know when to show grace and when to prune some dead branches.
I would vote for a few mothers who have successfully raised children to live productive lives. Moms who have developed workable budgets and kept the checking accounts balanced. Not to leave out fathers, I would also look for men who have a team mentality toward their family. Men who exhibit an ability to share in the joys, responsibilities, successes and failures with their partners in mentoring children and setting a nurturing, disciplined home environment.
I would vote for some minorities who understand what it’s like to have your voice diminished and have risen above their circumstances. People who have experienced all the -isms we have in our country and have found a way to succeed without malice toward those who have made their journey more difficult. People full of grace, confidence, compassion and wisdom.
I would vote for a few people who have worked hard in blue-collar jobs, paid their mortgages, put their kids through school, paid their bills on time and struggle to make ends meet in retirement. The ones who understand the power of humilty. The ones who have known shame because they never made it to the financial or corporate level our society deems successful. The ones our society may look down upon because they don’t epitomize our dream of a ‘Hollywood lifestyle’ with big homes, seemingly unlimited resources and $300 jeans.
So, that’s my dream government and the character qualities I will look for as political ads begin to inundate our lives. As a new election season kicks into high gear, I hope we will listen to what candidates say and how they communicate. We need people who are willing to work together. We need more than party-line politicians. Our country deserves leaders of the people, by the people and for the people.
May God help us as we vote and our leaders as they serve.
What about you? What type of person would you like to see on the ballot? What qualities are important to you in a leader?