Have you voted yet?

In the wind and rain of a dull Mid Sussex morning I have just been to cast my vote. I would warmly encourage all Christians across the United Kingdom to do the same. I would go as far as to say that it is part of our submission to and respect for those in authority that we do so.

Here are some objections I have heard to voting today:

“From a Christian perspective all the parties are as bad as one another“

It is possible to demonstrate that all of the parties have different policies on major issues which we can evaluate - views on the nation state and how we relate to other nations, on wealth creation and distribution, concerning how best to care for the vulnerable and the environment, among many others. We may differ as Christians on whether the vote for Brexit was a good and democratic decision and whether it should proceed. Our view on this will rightly influence how we vote. On social policy, such as support for marriage, abortion and equality, there is much to sadden us but there are differences between the parties which we need to look into and weigh up.

“My vote doesn’t count in this constituency“

It is perhaps an obvious point that this is a rather lazy attitude which relies on everyone else bothering to vote while you don't. If everybody else did likewise the voting system would not work at all and there would be no “safe" seats. But apart from that, there is something noble and right in just being able to place your vote to register your view and to become part of the overall statistics. Even if you are not part of the winning team you are supporting the democratic process.

“I can’t make up my mind“

We might find decision making difficult or we might just feel we don’t know enough to decide. I think all of us, including a number of politicians, fail to understand a lot of the detail of policies. But I think with what we know and as we pray for God’s wisdom it is possible to place our vote even if it is based on one major issue that you think is important or on your observations of the character or the priorities of a leader or a party.

So, go and vote today if you haven’t already done so. And pray for our nation to be led well for the glory of God and so that peace and freedom would continue to prevail so that the preaching the gospel may continue.

Graham Nicholls is Director of Affinity

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Thanks Graham this was the perspective I grew up with. However I have increasingly become convinced that the objections raised are legitimate. 1. There will be times when we honestly don't know. 2. Sometimes all options are wrong. So whilst I encourage people to work through the process of better options, your vote counting to an overall picture and local candidate decisions, there may well be times when at the end the right thing to do is say "I am refusing the options in front of me." I would also say that it is pejorative to accuse those who make such a conscious decision of "lazyness" infact to actively refuse the choice with a spoilt paper takes something more than just going with old voting habits

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