Elections

You may or may not be aware that 2010 is an Election year for our fair city, not to mention every other municipality and school division in the province. I will be the “Assistant Senior Election Official” (sounds important, eh?) for this October 27th event, for which preparations have already begun and for which I have a great big learning curve ahead of me. All of that is part of my new job, a job which disqualifies me from serving on City Council … not that I ever had such aspirations.

I got the idea of writing an article on “Why God May Want YOU to Run for City Council” and turned to two of my far-more experienced fellow clowns—I mean staff members—at City Hall (let’s just call them Dale L. and Nettie N. to protect their jobs.) I asked for their input, thinking perhaps this could be an inspiring joint effort, and they seemed happy to comply.

One of us was quite serious. The other two made one of us laugh so hard, however, that one of us felt compelled to share the laughs with you, and here they are:

Top Ten Reasons You Should Consider Running for City Council:

#10. You slow down when passing City Hall and give a respectful salute.

# 9. Your dream lunch break is made up of sandwiches and meetings.

# 8. You cover your desk with sticky notes of your name in different font sizes and in catchy rhyming phrases, for example: “Bubba Joe Finck: Less Stupider than You Might Think.”

# 7. You can hardly wait to watch the next broadcast of parliamentary sessions.

# 6. Your family gatherings are planned by a board of elected family members for whom you have rules of order.

# 5. You lie awake at night envisioning Portage la Utopia, funded on a shoestring budget.

# 4. You reply to a question and 30 minutes later you’re still talking but nobody remembers the question.

# 3. You use a meat tenderizer hammer at home to adjourn your family supper.

# 2. You believe crime is on the rise and you want to do something about it. In fact, just last week you saw two peanuts walking down an alley and one of them was a salted. (Badump-ching.)

And the number one reason you should consider running for City Council:

# 1. You remember the last thing Jesus said to politicians: “Don’t do anything until I get back.”

Buffoonery aside, I am convinced there are men and women in our church family who would make excellent City Councillors. Could one of them be you? You may argue like this:

I’m too young (we need people with lots of energy. Minimum age is 18).

I’m too old (we can use people with lots of life experience – there is no maximum age limit).

I’m too new to Portage (we can always use someone with a fresh perspective).

I’ve been in Portage way too long (we need folks who understand the community’s culture).

I’m too busy (want something done? Ask a busy person).

I couldn’t make a difference (have you seen the movie Amazing Grace?)

Or maybe you think you’re not smart enough or rich enough or charismatic enough or fill-in-the-blank enough. Well, maybe you’re not. And that’s okay. Obviously, God does not call all of His children to serve on City Council. But He does call us all to make a difference. In Romans 13, Paul says that the authorities have been instituted by God and that the role of government is to maintain order. God does have a say in who gets elected, whether those elected acknowledge Him or not. Imagine a world where they did.

Do you find your heart beating just a little faster when we sing “God of this City” at church? Do you ever drive around town and see ways you would like to initiate change? Are you a leader to whom others turn for ideas or counsel? Has anyone ever suggested such a thing to you before? If your answers are yes, yes, yes, and yes—it might be an indication that this is something God is calling you to consider. Before you throw your hat into the ring—pray about it, educate yourself on what’s involved, and talk it over with someone you trust.

Oh, yes—and thicken your skin for all the jokes that will be told at your expense.

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  1. Liz Driedger
    August 12, 2011 at 9:31 pm

    Hi Terrie, I had forgotten you had written this article. So here I am about 3/4 of a year in and I have yet to salute city hall; although I called the mayor “Your Honor” at one council meeting. That caused a laugh. I don’t mind lunch meetings as long and they feed me and I cant imagine having something to say that take 30 minutes, and when the family is all home for supper, someone else usually decides when the meal is over……which begs the question “am I a failure or obeying Jesus’ final command”? It is indeed a time challenge but a very rewarding experience. I would encourage other PAC members to consider that in 2014 they will again have the opportunity to run for city council. Go for it!!

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