The more I listen to Mike Huckabee, the more convinced I am of his authenticity and of his wisdom. I have been concerned with the turn our nation has taken over the past several years. We appear to be on the edge of another recession. Morality has become a bad word in secular circles as people turn towards shades of gray in areas where all was once either right or wrong. An advice columnist in the Dallas Morning News wrote yesterday in answer to a question about why it is no longer shameful for people to live together before marriage:
I presume the popular culture opinion about this matter has shifted because when people stopped to ponder the moral question, they couldn’t figure out why it would be necessary for society to pass judgment on an activity that simply doesn’t enter the public sphere. Even if you view this behavior as some sort of moral crime, surely it is victimless.
Victimless? The children who are born in these covenant-less families are the victims. The people themselves are the victims as they expose themselves to STDs, instability, and possibly heartache down the road. Mike Huckabee is a leader whose experience as Governor and as a minister exposed him to all sorts of social and cultural problems. Here’s what he has to say about marriage:
Our true strength doesn’t come from our military or our gross national product, it comes from our families. What’s the point of keeping the terrorists at bay in the Middle East if we can’t keep decline and decadence at bay here at home? The growing number of children born out of wedlock and the rise in no-fault divorce have been a disaster for our society. They have pushed many women and children into poverty and onto the welfare, food stamp, and Medicaid rolls. These children are more likely to drop out of school and end up in low-paying, dead-end jobs, they are more likely to get involved with drugs and crime, they are more likely to have children out of wedlock or get divorced themselves someday, continuing the unhappy cycle.
I bring this up because God has much to say about wisdom. The Bible is full of references to it…many fail because of lack of wisdom…many rise to greatness because of an abundance of wisdom. Mike Huckabee has very wise positions on the issues facing our country today. Those of us who follow Christ have a duty to evaluate the candidates’ positions not just on whether or not we agree with them personally, but on whether or not those positions are wise.
Let’s take a look at these scriptures and evaluate our current leaders and those who are seeking our votes against these words.
Your rulers are rebels,
companions of thieves;
they all love bribes
and chase after gifts.
That one doesn’t need much commentary! Look at the corrupt politicians on both sides of the Hill. Kickbacks, anyone? How about some special earmarks because you supported me in the election?
10 Therefore, you kings, be wise;
be warned, you rulers of the earth.
11 Serve the LORD with fear
and rejoice with trembling.
Huckabee seeks wisdom and relies on God to bring it to him:
Real faith makes us humble and mindful, not of the faults of others, but of our own. It makes us less judgmental, as we see others with the same frailties we have. Faith gives us strength in the face of injustice and motivates us to do our best for “the least of us.”
Huckabee’s campaign created a negative ad to defend him from dishonest accusations by Mitt Romney. However, after thinking and praying about it, Huckabee pulled the ad. He would not run it. Take a look at Proverbs 12:
17 A truthful witness gives honest testimony,
but a false witness tells lies.
18 Reckless words pierce like a sword,
but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
19 Truthful lips endure forever,
but a lying tongue lasts only a moment.
Huckabee apparently came to the conclusion that his record stands on its own. The Romney ‘lying tongues’ out there will last only a moment; in fact, they did nothing to prevent Hucakbee’s victory in Iowa, did they?
30 The mouth of the righteous man utters wisdom,
and his tongue speaks what is just.
31 The law of his God is in his heart;
his feet do not slip.
A man who has God’s law in his heart looks beyond sheer numbers…he sees people. Remember Jesus’ sermon about the sheep and goats in Matthew 25?
34“Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37“Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’
40“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’
Like many other governors, Huckabee opened Arkansas to Katrina refugees with open arms. Rather than warehouse them, he sought a way to give these people dignity. He invited these strangers in:
We had plenty of state facilities, like armories, that we could have used – big, cavernous, impersonal places – but to me that wasn’t housing people, that was warehousing them. In looking for alternatives, I thought of our church camps and scout camps, which had just closed for the season, and I invited their leaders to my office to ask if they would re-open for us. Not a single one said no. They gave me the keys to their kingdom.
Over that Labor Day weekend, we raised an army of volunteers, and we had folks making up beds and sorting clothes and chopping vegetables and grilling meat. I’ll never forget the mountains of toys and diapers, the flats of bottled water as far as the eye could see. The stream of buses was endless, but we were ready for them, ready with a hug and a teddy bear, a hot shower, a new wardrobe, an inviting buffet. I had a clear vision of how I wanted to welcome and care for these people: they were beyond hungry and thirsty and dirty and exhausted, they had been traumatized and dehumanized, treated like packages bouncing around a UPS truck, and we brought them back to life.
In my opinion, that was one of the wisest things any leader did during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. I’m preparing to watch the debates tonight on ABC and will carefully look at the candidates’ answers. Are they speaking “fluff,” or are they speaking wisdom?