Sunday, 11 May 2014

Make your mark

20 years of democracy. What an achievement. To think that 21 years ago the vast majority of this country were denied this right is astounding. And look how far we've come and how much has changed since then. I may not remember the Apartheid days but I certainly can appreciate how much has changed and what each voting day that comes around means to the population of this beautiful country. But boy have I been disappointed in the days following Election Day.

Prior May 7, Facebook was a flood with “make your mark”, “anything is possible” and “we are one” sentiments. Post May 7 all I see is negativity. And I get it. I understand that ballot papers were lost, that things went wrong and that maybe some of you feel your voices weren't heard fairly. Elections are difficult. We know that the ANC has many problems it needs to face and Zuma is far from the perfect example of a President. Sure we have a long way to go in achieving all that needs doing to better the lives of South Africans. We are faced with crime, corruption, under-handedness and lack of accountability in government. But I feel strongly that our response should not be one of anger and hate. We should not point fingers at the “stupid” (and I've heard them referred to as much worse on social media) voters keeping the ANC in power. We do not understand what these people have been through; we have not given our LIVES for the right to vote. We did not grow up fearing our future and being ‘saved’ by this government. We cannot begin to judge others on their reasons for voting.

As Christians in particular, we should be the voices of hope. We should look at ways to get involved in our wards or platforms where change can be encouraged. We should stand behind our leaders not because we admire them or even agree with them but because God is SOVEREIGN. Over EVERYTHING. Which includes our situation in this country. We do not need to stand by and accept mediocre rule but we should not be joining in on the mudslinging either. We are called to spread hope, peace and love. We need to commit this country, its people and its leaders into the hands of our Lord who is so much bigger than all of this. Read this piece from Titus 3:1-1:

Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarrelling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Saviour appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit.

We are the future of this country. Instead of getting caught up in the negativity of it all, we should stand firm for what we believe and acknowledge that we are no better than anyone else, especially with regards to where we placed that little ‘X’.

Maybe this country needs a change of government. Maybe it needs its current government to change it up and lead for the people. But that is not for us alone to decide. We made our mark, now it’s time to follow that up by supporting change where we can and focusing on moving forward rather than let ourselves be dragged down. I’ll leave you with the words of Gareth Cliff because if HE is making sense on this, we certainly should be too…
“Congratulations to the ANC for their victory and to all the opposition parties for their gains. Let us find a way to make things work for the next five years - to collectively support the positive, constructive role we all have to play in making peoples' lives better, growing the economy, being nicer to each other and halting the greed and corruption that ail us”.

1 comment:

  1. Hey guys,

    I agree with what you say about moving forward as opposed to being dragged down...but moving forward is no easy feat. The general 'vibe' that i felt on social media after election day was one of entitlement...we all want a better country, and we are all entitled to what we believe is good governance, but no-one seems to be willing to bear the responsibility that comes with that entitlement. The attitude that most people have toward the country as a whole is not health, nor is it without reason. My point is that we must somehow make the most of what we have....and stop waiting for someone else to take action.