Time to pray. I’m serious. Of course, it’s always time to pray, right? Well, yes . . . but . . . we pastors can promote civic involvement and encourage folks to get involved in public discourse. But what do we do when someone takes that seriously? What do we do when they run for office? Or what do we do if they actually win? Today I want to say – please don’t forget to pray for them.

Kenny Kao ran for city council in Palos Verdes Estates this month. And do you know what happened? He won a seat. From what I hear things can be – and actually are – fairly contentious in that city on the Hill. Amazing, picky rich people? Not a chance. But it’s true. So guess what? Even though campaigning can be brutal, I’m not so sure that governing is going to be any simpler. In fact, it won’t be.

Kenny and Alicia Kao have been at Peninsula a while now, and their youngest child is in our preschool. They usually attend second service – so introduce yourself some time. And if you want to be a huge blessing to them, pray for them. And then, tell them you are praying for them. Granted, you won’t agree with every decision handed down by the council, but he’s a brother in Christ and we owe him our support and our prayer and our encouragement.

We often rail against politicians. And, to be honest, they deserve it most of the time. But here is someone in our midst who sees a need and has stuck out his neck and is giving up his time to serve the community. To that I say – way to go. Kenny needs the backing and support and encouragement of a church family. May this place be a source of refreshment for him and the family. May we be a safe place for him to recharge his batteries for the week and challenges ahead.
So, God bless you, Kenny (and Alicia). I could never do what you are doing. Church politics are hard enough for me to navigate, I can’t imagine what it’s like without the common base of faith. So may you be faithful to follow God and always seek His wisdom, that our community may be free and safe and nurturing to children.

My hat is off to you, Kenny. May your godly tribe increase. The fact is we need more “Kennys” around the city halls and state houses in our nation. It is a duty to serve the public good, but sometimes we are all just too selfish of our time and energy to serve. But light needs to shine in every corner of darkness –and the public square needs believers. There really aren’t too many better ways to “love our neighbors” than to serve them with the authority of a leader. When we vote we give the authority we do have to that leader. It is just nice to know one of them – and to be able to pray for him through the struggles of leadership.

We need Christians in the public arena. Who’s next?