Dr. Jeren Rowell, NTS board of trustees chair and Kansas City District Superintendent, reminds pastors of our chief role during a contentious election season.

The presidential election process seems always to inspire lots of emotion, argument, and (by its nature) division. You are keenly aware that this season seems more divisive and rancorous than ever. It is important that Christians engage appropriately in the public arena while remembering that we are citizens of heaven. We pledge our allegiance to King Jesus who continues his redemptive mission through our life together under the power of the Holy Spirit. Pastors should guide their people with biblical/theological clarity about the ways the church should engage culture, particularly politics which by definition is about power. The gospel has much to say about the world’s grasp for power and how we as Christ’s followers should respond. Speaking of power, I am sure we all believe that the most important activity for the church in its involvement in the polis is to pray. This is the point of what I want to ask you today: how are you leading your people to pray as their strongest and most effective response to the current political process? I suspect that many of our people would give the “right answer” regarding the importance of prayer, but I wonder how many truly believe it and practice it as if they believe it. Specifically, what you are doing to lead your people in special and intentional times of prayer for our nation and for the presidential election? It seems to me that this would be a time for the church to really go to work. Would we, for the next several months, give unusual focus to this prayer in our worship services? Would we call our people together for special times of fasting and prayer for our nation? Would we work to ensure that small groups are spending significant portions of their times together engaging in this prayer? It seems the temptation of some Christians in this particular election cycle is to disengage, give up, and become hopeless and cynical. As pastors, we should be giving them a strong and meaningful alternative. So let’s call our people to prayer and fasting for the healing of our nation. Let’s pray that through the miracle of grace godly leaders might be raised up. As citizens of the peaceable kingdom of God in Christ, this is the right thing to do