We are ambassadors for Christ. I do not run in political circles and have only interacted with one ambassador… a man from a European country in the Balkans. He was a believer and a preacher as well, and at one time had held political office there. We had him in our church a couple of years ago on a Sunday evening. His coming was set up at the last minute and I agreed to go pick him up at his hotel. At the arranged time I showed up out front to meet him… in my Toyota Tacoma pickup that I was driving that evening. What the person who arranged his visit failed to tell me was that his wife had come with him. That was fine but my Tacoma only had fold-down, jump seats in the back and she was not a small woman. It wasn’t pretty getting her back there but he insisted that he wanted to sit up front. She said she’d been in worse. I thought, “yeah, in a Third World country.”
But anyway…Webster’s New World Dictionary defines the role of an ambassador as being, “the highest ranking diplomat representing another country.” An ambassador is sent by the ranking political authorities of one nation to live in another. The role we play as Christians living in a “foreign country” called the United States of America is the role of ambassadors for another Kingdom.
As such, we represent the customs, the language, the ideals and values of that land that we have not yet seen or lived in. Yet, that is where our citizenship lies. (Philippians 3:20). And we must continually ask ourselves an important question: What kind of ambassador am I? Am I seeking first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness? Am I seeking to see others be “reconciled to God” as my responsibility, my mission?
Do I reflect the “customs, language (!) and values” of where my citizenship lies first in my life? Or have I convinced myself that this world I currently live in IS my home? Are we more concerned that our opinions about political matters be heard, even if we compromise our role as ambassadors in the process?
Certainly we have a unique, dual citizenship as Christians. As such, we must participate in the things that make our nation a better place for all to live, including elections. But in the midst of a controversial and volatile election, we must remember where our first loyalty lies… where our first priority lies…
…with a Kingdom from another world.
FOR MEDITATION: We are ambassadors for Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:20
FOR REFLECTION: How can you stand for and be involved in the political process and yet maintain your balance and priority as a Kingdom citizen? One need not negate the other. Standing in the gap, while hard, is essential.