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America needs leaders with Christian integrity - James Bell

Two years ago, we witnessed the most negative and vicious political campaign in my memory. I feel our citizens need to let our elected officials know we do not need, nor want, to hear so many negative ads and statements in present, and future, campaigns.

In fact, I would like to see the responsible citizens of this country send letters, e-mails, or calls to their elected representatives, asking them to clean-up their future campaigns for election, or else to forget the Christian vote!

We need to go further and tell them we fully expect them to demonstrate Christian integrity in administering their office, and to show the same qualities in their personal lives. Some may think their personal life is not any of our -- the public's -- business, but when they entered public life and were elected to represent the people, then, it became our business. What they desperately need is Christian integrity to guide their thinking, and their actions.

Why do I say Christian integrity? Because the Bible says our rulers and leaders are divinely called. So, I say "Christian," for the ways of God are both just and righteous. Integrity means "adherence to a set of values."

I would not feel comfortable with just any set of values, but for political servants with Christian values, I am sure of what they believe. I firmly believe that if our nation's leaders were the same today, as they were in the formative years of this republic, they would be Christians, and would conduct themselves as such. But, instead, we have corruption, hate, and envy.

There is little loyalty and respect for their fellow men, nor even for themselves. Many steal and cheat, by taking bribes, and selling their votes and influence, for their private gain. The Bible says we should set an example of good works with integrity and dignity, and if we did, our opponents would have nothing bad to say about us.

Then, solid men and women could debate the issues of the day, and declare the best ways to solve our problems, and promise to work hard to make conditions better for all citizens. This is what most of our populace wants to hear -- not how bad their opponent is, and a detailed list of accusations and sorry things he has done -- but how can our problems be solved, and how life can be better for all.

I don't believe that decency, honesty, loyalty, respect and love for our great country, as well as all its citizens, is out of style, or not cared about in our nation today. There is hardly any respect, or loyalty, for those elected officials who are in the "other" party, even if they are right, and have good ideas and plans. They are not supported, and are called inept, or incapable of carrying out their duties.

Since when did we, as voters, elect a political party to run our government? We elect the best man or woman for each job, and we want them to serve with efficiency and integrity and to get the job done for the good of all -- not just the "party." We expect cooperation and support from the other elected representatives, and a team effort to get the job done.

St. Paul said in 1st. Timothy 2:1-2: "I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for Kings and all that are in authority, so that we may lead a quiet and tranquil life in all Godliness and dignity. I pray for all our elected servants, that they may live and serve with integrity and dignity that pleases our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. May the Lord our God bless you and keep you and give you peace."

Amen.