This post was originally written in 2015.
In light of the upcoming 2017 election, it seems fitting to re-post and re-pray for our country and its leaders — Jimmy
On 7th May 2015, the UK had the opportunity to vote for its new Government. The votes were counted, the Conservative party won the most seats and Mr David Cameron began another five years in the office of Prime Minister.
Since the results were announced, social media has been flooded with opinions, complaints, rants and viewpoints right across the full spectrum of political persuasion and human emotion. Open letters to Mr Cameron began to fill timelines and various infographics predicted the next five years to varying degrees of tragedy or triumphalism.
My personal reflections are as follows.
Firstly, if you’ve written, or are thinking of writing an open letter to David Cameron, why not actually send him your letter? It strikes me that posting it on Facebook in the vain hope the Prime Minister of the UK will stumble across your Facebook page and hear your concerns is somewhat less effective that sending your views to his house!
Secondly, particularly to my Christian friends, though not exclusively so, we are called to pray for our government and leaders. Regardless of whether we voted for him or his party or not, we should pray for the peace and prosperity of our country and those democratically elected to govern.
But the thought that has challenged me most is this. I think it is excellent that so much discussion has taken, and is taking place amongst communities and on social media. However, the election results are not the final word, they are only the beginning. We need to remain engaged in the political situation of our country (not leave our shores in search of a country with a ‘better’ political/social system according to some ambiguous league table as some have threatened to do). Our politicians and MP’s are elected to represent us. Unless I have fundamentally misunderstood our democratic parliamentary system (in which case, someone please educate me!) our local MP’s need to hear our views, they need to understand what matters to our communities in order to do their job properly and represent us accurately.
If there is an issue that resonates with your heart and beliefs, write or ask to meet with your MP about it. Get involved. “Be the change you want to see” in your community, in your country.
As a pastor of a church, I see the needs in our community and I strive to act in a way I believe Jesus would act – justly, with compassion for all to bring about peace and love for everyone. Some political policies make that task easier, others make it considerably harder. But ultimately, we are called to love one another as we love ourselves. That is not only a task that crosses political divides, racial differences and social backgrounds, but is a vision of hope for every single person to be valued and cared for.
So my prayer is that God would bless David Cameron and his cabinet and government with wisdom to discern what is best for this country as a whole and courage to make the right decisions and to carry out the duties of his office with integrity and compassion.