If you haven’t been paying attention for the past few months, then you’ve missed the selections of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump as major party nominees for this year’s Presidential Election. With those selections have come anxiety, worry, and any other emotions associated with fear.
But why fear? Why is fear the most prevalent emotion presently? Let’s allow nationally-recognized pastor, Max Lucado, introduce this bewilderment a little more deeply.
There’s an angst in the country, and I think there’s a fear. I think there’s a fear of we don’t know what’s next. And I’ve tried, maybe you can help me, I’ve tried to put my finger on the root of this fear. – Max Lucado
Lucado goes on to say he believes this fear comes from a disconnect with God and a disconnect with fellow man.
I tend to agree with him as Romans 8:15 says, “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’”
So if you’re a Christian reading this, I plead with you to stop being fearful. If you knew how much weight has truly been lifted from you, then you would not sweat something as trivial as politics. However, based on some of the anger that I am seeing displayed, it’s fairly evident that you are in a deep panic.
If you’re anyone else reading this, I plead with you to stop being fearful as well. Fear just isn’t going to solve your problems. Fear almost always causes poor decision-making. And likewise, it’s a terrible reason to vote.
In fact, neuroscience research from a few years ago suggests the following remedy when gripped with fear: neutralize the situation.
This means not being a fearmonger. It means avoiding people who are overly pessimistic about the economy. It means tuning out media that fan emotional flames. Unless you are a day-trader, it means closing the web page with the market ticker. It does mean being prepared, but not being a hypervigilant, everyone-in-the-bunker type.
I don’t know about you, but I hate fear. It robs me of friendships—new and old. It robs me of critical-thinking skills. And it robs me of joy. Like any thief, I want it out of my life. It’s my hope that you will eventually want fear out of your life too.
In relation to the current election, kick fear to the curb before you hit the voting booths. If we keep fear around, it will build up strength and make us believe we have fewer choices than we actually have.
So be courageous. No vote submitted from a position of courage is ever a wasted vote. Not yesterday. Not now. Not ever.