For political junkies, a presidential election year is a joy; it's Christmas, the World Series, and a snow day all rolled into one year-long celebration of democracy. For the rest of the populace, it's something less than that; a year of annoying ads, shrill commentary, and obnoxious political partisans incessantly talking about how the fate of civilization as we know it rests on the election's outcome. Most of us would like to go to sleep for the year and wake up when it's all over.
Except, of course, that we can't. As Christians, we're called to do what we can to make the world look more like the Kingdom of God. The quality of our political leadership will affect how well we can fulfill that calling. For that reason, the electoral process cannot be a matter of indifference to Christians. While too many of us have made the mistake of trying to legislate Christian faith (or at least Christian ethics), that failed experiment doesn't change our responsibility be salt and light in the midst of this political season.