Here’s something to think on: what if Justin Trudeau were a Jesus Follower?
In Canada, we are mercifully past the latest election. Justin is still prime minister, although his Liberal party actually polled fewer votes than the Conservatives and didn’t win enough seats this time to form a majority government; it was shut out of two provinces and the separatist Bloc Québécois (I know: I’ll get yelled-at for calling them “separatist”, but if it walks like a duck …) has regained its hold on La Belle Province.
I’ve grown to loathe politics, and I try to stay away from them in this blog, but the thought behind that paragraph should tell you why I’m making an exception here. Our country is more divided than ever before, and no leader has emerged who can unify it.
“If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.
“And if a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”Mark 3:24-25
Justin Trudeau talks about working with the governments of the provinces that rejected his party, and he has already picked a member of his own party to be his “advisor” on Alberta. But he’s shown no sign of reaching out to the people those provinces elected, and it leads one to wonder if this national division is reparable.
Let’s get real. There is only One who can unify Canada — or any country — and that’s Jesus Christ. Put aside cultural differences, traditions, identities and political stripes: if this country is to stand, it has to unify under Jesus. Without Him as our focus, the country will fly apart, just as we’re seeing in the United States and United Kingdom.
Jesus Christ is social justice. He is environmental restoration. He is women’s rights and equality for all. He is the rescue of refugees around the world and the provision God brings for our country to support them. He is prosperity, as we rely on God to provide what we need. All we need to do is seek Him above all else and look out for others, even at the expense of our own interests.
Why do I doubt that Justin Trudeau is a Jesus Follower? For one thing, when the Governor General (a former astronaut) publicly ridiculed people of faith, the PM did not distance himself from her remarks or point out that, as the representative of the “Defender of the Faith” – the Queen – she was miles out of line. Instead, he said something about “Canadians believe in the importance of science” (I hate it when politicians begin statements with “Canadians believe” or “Canadians think”).
But beyond that, the PM has shown a propensity for apologizing for things. Significantly, he has apologized profusely to Indigenous Canadians for the treatment they and their ancestors suffered over generations. But it’s one thing to apologize: it’s another to repent. Jesus doesn’t say, “unless you apologize, you will all likewise perish,” does He? So long as the majority of drug addicts in Canada are Indigenous and literally dozens of Reserves have unfit drinking water, apologies are not worth much.
It’s worth pointing out that since the apologies, many millions of dollars have been spent, trying to fix the water problems, improve the lot of Indigenous people and “reduce the harm” of drug use. But that’s the effect of politically expedient apologies: say you’re sorry, make a show of doing something, and get on with what you think is really important.
Repenting, on the other hand, means going through a change in heart. That change leads us to closer to Jesus and closer to God. When that is allowed to happen, finding the way to make things right and move forward follows as the night the day.
That’s just one example. The fact is, our country is severely divided, and there is only one Way to heal that division.
For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.”
For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.
For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”Romans 10:11-13
Now, while it’s interesting to speculate on how the country would have been run if Justin Trudeau were a Jesus Follower, applying Jesus’ principles and teachings to his policies and statements, we know that’s not a reality of politics, and nor should it be.
Our country is divided; Jesus is the Great Equalizer and Unifier: but leading people to Christ and focusing them on Him is not the job of politicians or governments. It’s far too important. It’s our job to reach out to others, regardless of “identity” or culture or background, and share the good news, whether through word or deed. It’s something we all can do, and it’s something needed now, as never before.