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Pray Think Vote: Cast your ballot responsibly for the nation and our future

01:26 PM June 30, 2021

B&SK ELECTIONS PREPARATION / MAY 13, 2018
Teachers at the Corazon Aquino Elementary School in Batasan Road, Quezon City on Sunday, May 13, 2018 prepare election materials for the Barangay and Sangguniang Kabataan elections on Monday, May 14.
INQUIRER PHOTO / GRIG C. MONTEGRANDE

More than any time in the history of the Philippines is there a greater need for unity among Filipinos. The Covid 19 pandemic has ravaged the country and the world. China has claimed the West Philippine Sea; pushing away our fishermen from their traditional fishing grounds and establishing artificial islands as military outposts to claim the resources within our Exclusive Economic Zone. The response of our national leaders is being considered and weighed by our people and they will be subject to the peoples’ vote in the coming elections.

It is in the light of these troubling situations confronting our country that we invite all men and women of goodwill and love of country to come together as a movement to pray and think about the situation of our country and vote responsibly for the nation and our future.

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MISSION – Urging Filipino voters in all sectors of society, particularly those in social media and the religious sector, to fervently pray for awakening through God’s wisdom to elect only prayerful servant leaders in public office.

VISION – Prayerful Filipino voters electing prayerful servant leaders in national and local elections.

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We Filipinos value faith and religion, and being prayerful is one of our traits. Unfortunately, our choices of national and local leaders fail to validate our Christianity. Five decades past, and we have yet to realize the essential aspect of prayer and the guidance of the Will of God in the sacred exercise of suffrage. In the past, Church leaders taught us to use our conscience in choosing leaders based on their qualifications and accomplishments.

As a response to uneducated and misguided voting practices, some members of the Alpha Phi Beta Fraternity San Beda University have adopted the PRAY THINK VOTE advocacy in accordance with the vision/mission declaration above.

The PRAY THINK VOTE advocacy is contrary to the corrupted culture of present-day Philippine politics. The advocates of PRAY THINK VOTE calls for conversion and transformation of Philippine with adherence to Romans 12:2, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Filipinos believe in the power of prayer especially during a crisis. In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, we are told to “Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit.” Despite God’s reassurance, still we neglect to pray during election period – a time when God’s guidance is most needed.

Now, we maintain that only if we ask, seek and knock on God, He will definitely reveal to us His will that will guide us in choosing prayerful servant leaders. Since the inception of electing national and local leaders, we have not sought His wisdom, that is why we fail to vote wisely and end up having to contend with grave incompetence in Government.

More than ever, now is the time to wield our own strength as Filipino voters in choosing our leaders and resist intimidation from megalomaniacs who wield guns, goons and gold. With constancy in prayer, our fears and weaknesses are extinguished, the lures of corrupt electoral maneuverings are easily conquered, and we will receive an outpouring of God’s blessings of inspiration, wisdom and courage to restore the sanctity of the ballot as a vehicle for establishing a Government led by real prayerful servant leaders.

We also can find support for prayer, careful thought, and right voting in the Quran.

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“Verily, Allah (God) will not change the condition of a people as long as they do not change their state themselves ” [Quran, al-Ra’d 13:11]

Thus we must as a people take upon ourselves the challenge to change our selves and we are assured of God’s help.

“And We made them leaders guiding (men) by Our Command and We sent them inspiration to do good deeds to establish regular prayers and to practice regular charity; and they constantly served Us (and Us only)”. [AL Quran 21:73]

Thus we must establish our leaders with regular prayers and regular charity and that these leaders may constantly serve the people.

It is further said, that, “Allah commands you to make over the trusts to those best fitted to discharge them.” [Quran 4: 59]

Thus voting is not merely a right but an obligation – a trust – to be discharged in the best possible way. The voter is not the master of his vote but a trustee – who must discharge his trust as equitably and fairly as possible.

God, our Creator, knows the past and future. He knows what is best for us and He wants nothing but the best for us as stated in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

This is so because of his unlimited love for us, quoting John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Is our vision and mission possible? YES! Luke 1:37 says, “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” There is no such thing as an impossible dream if that dream is in accord with the will of God; not our will but the Will of God who is loving and merciful.

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