“If I have to watch one more political ad, I am going to scream!” “I am sick and tired of these candidates bashing one another.” “I will be so glad when Nov. 6 arrives and all this political stuff ends!” “I don’t like either of the candidates for president, so I think I will just not vote.”

Have you heard any of these statements lately? OK, so perhaps the question needs to be whether you have said any of the above statements in recent days! I certainly can feel your pain (to quote a famous politician). While I am interested in politics and have great interest in the decisions made in the political arena, I can agree with some of the sentiments above.

I watched the debates and some of the ads with the same spirit as when watching football. My reaction was a desire to throw something through the television. Or I find myself yelling at the screen like at the end of the Texas-OSU game when my Cowboys were robbed! (As a side note, this is a personal opinion and not that of the BGCO.)

But let me suggest that all of us take a deep breath and think hard about the decision we are about to make as American citizens. This decision will determine the future of our great nation. Though we are tired of the political process that seems to get longer and longer each election cycle, consider the alternative. People in many countries would be more than willing to trade places with us and would gladly tolerate the debates, speeches and advertisements to know they had the opportunity to make a real choice. I believe their hearts would soar with joy if they could cast a meaningful ballot to choose a leader.

Politics can be wearisome, but the alternative is to have no choice at all—to endure dictators who have total control to make decisions that impact lives with no accountability and no recourse. Ask the people in Syria if they would be pleased to face our “unhappiness.” Or ask them if they would rather choose the “lesser of two evils,” as some envision our presidential vote.

The privilege to vote is one of the greatest grace gifts of our Creator to Americans and every other nation that is free. Our forefathers gave their lives, fortunes and future to give us this great nation. Men and women who have put on the uniform of the United States military have given their last breath to defend freedom and ensure the right to cast a ballot for the person we deem best to lead us. We dare not default on such a costly privilege.

I understand the dilemma some face when they step into the voting booth. You look at the candidates and wish there was another. But there is not! So I encourage you to consider the stance of the candidates on moral and ethical issues. Who stands for our Christian ethic more than the other? Who most closely aligns with the biblical view of the sanctity of human life, biblical marriage and freedom of religion? Neither candidate stands in the tradition of conservative biblical Christianity. Nevertheless, it is up to you to choose the candidate you believe will stand closest to the Christian worldview.

I have made my choice; you should make yours. Do not ignore the kindness and grace of our Lord toward you in placing you in America—the land of the free. Do not ignore the blood-bought right to cast your ballot. One person said to me, “I’ll have to hold my nose to cast a ballot.” So be it. Put a clothespin on your nose, but do not sidestep one of the greatest rights provided in this free nation. VOTE!

I rest my case.