13 They sent some of the Pharisees and supporters of Herod to trap him in his words. 14 They came to him and said, “Teacher, we know that you’re genuine and you don’t worry about what people think. You don’t show favoritism but teach God’s way as it really is. Does the Law allow people to pay taxes to Caesar or not? Should we pay taxes or not?”
15 Since Jesus recognized their deceit, he said to them, “Why are you testing me? Bring me a coin. Show it to me.” 16 And they brought one. He said to them,“Whose image and inscription is this?”
“Caesar’s,” they replied.
17 Jesus said to them, “Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar and to God what belongs to God.” His reply left them overcome with wonder. Mark 12:13-17, CEB
Presidential candidates do not bring more God into our country. Presidential candidates also do not take God out of our country. The presence of God has nothing to do with our government. God’s presence is found and felt in and amongst his creation and his people. He alone chooses where to assert himself and where to withdraw himself. Voting a certain presidential candidate into office does absolutely nothing to advance God’s kingdom (the kingdom is the new reality God is creating where all of creation is defined by his mercy, grace, forgiveness, and love). God advances his kingdom in the way he chooses in the timeline he chooses. He enlists his people as servants in carrying out his tasks. This isn’t done through politics or voting, it’s done in the work of faithful communities all of over the world who seek to live in accordance with faith’s way of seeing in all things, great and small.
If you have something you want accomplished in the world for your community and you think a politician will do that, then by all means vote for that person. But let’s be honest with ourselves- this has little to do with God’s plans. Politicians can do good things. They can affect change. But God’s work is not primarily done through politics. It’s done through the acts of grace, mercy, forgiveness, love, and charity in our families and in our communities. Let’s not lose site of that.