Donkeys, Elephants & Sheep: An Unlikely Menagerie

DSC_0126 A couple days ago, I attended the 2015 Washington Prayer Gathering. Thousands of area Christians met that day to pray for the city, for our churches, and for revival.

I always enjoy seeing Christians of various stripes gathered together in unity. All colors, dissimilar theologies, and diverse styles of prayer and worship became an amalgam of church that day.

The entire thing lasted less than two hours. During that time there was great music, a lot of smiling, and some really inspirational prayer time.

DSC_0101One of the pastors who led in prayer that day was Steven King (no, not the famous author) of Cherrydale Baptist Church. He used a phrase that hit me and stuck with me. He said we’re not donkeys, we’re not elephants, we’re sheep.

He said that in prayer, and I laughed out loud—right there in the middle of thousands of people intent on seeking the Lord. I couldn’t help myself.

I laughed out loud…

I think I laughed because it was so clever. I also laughed (I think) because I wish it were true.

His statement was an allusion to the political proclivities of us all. He was making the point that this gathering was not a political one. It was a spiritual one.

The donkeys and elephants, of course, were a reference to the major political parties in this country. They are never quite so prevalent and present as they are where we stood (in the heart of Washington DC).

DSC_0238On that day, politics didn’t matter. On that day, there were indeed no donkeys or elephants. We who gathered there on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial were sheep. We were followers of Jesus Christ.

We were not there as voters. We were not there as protestors. We were not there as agitators or detractors. We were there as Christians wanting God’s best for our city and nation.

Would that were always true. But it’s far from true most of the time…or so it seems.

Political Leaners

In my limited experience, most Christians are such political leaners they can’t stand straight anymore. What I mean by that is we seem to have blinders on when it comes to our politics.

I know Christians who are Democrats and some who are Republicans. I know Christians who are political liberals and some who are conservative. Who I don’t know, (or don’t seem to meet very much) are Christians who try to be independent of politics. In other words, people who think for themselves—who act on things based on their knowledge of Scripture rather than their biases of culture or heritage.DSC_0203

I’m always amazed at the number of Christians who are Democrat or Republican because they were raised to be so. I’m sorry folks, but times and circumstances change. Maybe some of our affiliations should as well.

I’m sure a lot of you will disagree. But it seems to me, we need a few more sheep and a lot fewer donkeys and elephants in our menagerie.

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