Rick Warren: Unity is the Priority Over Politics

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Continuing the conversation with “America’s Pastor” about the role of politics and fear in our nation.

Ed: Many are asking the question: how do we navigate this political season? You’ve been called America’s Pastor. You’ve had to navigate these same challenges that many of us have as well. What advice can you share?

Rick: This is my 11th presidential election since I’ve been the pastor of Saddleback Church. Out of those 11 different election cycles this one’s the most unusual.

In my conversations with people about this election year, I’ve heard of four different things that are causing additional stress this year.

The first is the campaigning never ends now.

We’re in 24-hour, four-year campaigns. As soon as the election was over four years ago, the campaign started for this one. We’ve been in that for literally four years. We are in a constant campaign event and people are worn out by this.

Second, in this particular campaign, by all accounts, it’s been the most vicious, vitriolic, and polarizing campaign probably in modern history.

People are worn out in the name calling, the stereotyping, the stigmatizing, and the dehumanizing. People used to disagree with each other and still treat each other with respect. Now, if I don’t like you, then you’re not even a human. Then, as I said because of this pandemic, very unusual, 90 million people have already voted. This will by far be the largest election in the history of America.

Finally, more money’s being spent than ever before which means we’re being bombarded with 24-hour political messages.

All four of these issues have created in my opinion an exaggerated sense of the place of politics in the life of people. All of the news channels that used to be news channels, every one of them are now de facto political channels because that’s …

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