Winning, Losing, & #NeverTrump

Before the election, projection models showed that a popular vote shift of 2 points in either direction moved the electoral outcome drastically. Nate Silver at 538 said that if Clinton won popular vote by 4 points, she would win the electoral college easily. He said if Clinton won by about 2 points the electoral college became a toss up.

Think about that. Out of 100 voters, it only takes one or two to change their minds to drastically alter the outcome.

This is one reason we should be careful in the election aftermath. The temptation is to look back and think the winning campaign was brilliant and the losing campaign incompetent. Even in the last two days I've heard people talk about how Clinton was such a terrible candidate and Trump called the most talented politician ever. If one or two people in 100 had voted the other way, people would be talking about what a disaster Trump & his campaign were and how brilliantly Clinton brushed off scandals and prevailed.

Where it hits home to me is when people now are acting like Trump's win is somehow discrediting to those who took the #NeverTrump stand. Most of us thought Trump would lose and lose badly. That prediction was wrong. Very wrong. But that wasn't the basis of #NeverTrump. I didn't refuse to vote for him because I thought he was going to lose - I didn't vote for him because I thought he was unfit for office. His win doesn't change any of that. If you had told me back in February that a Trump was going to win, it wouldn't have changed my position. I would have said, "If he's going to, he's going to do it without me." And that's exactly what he did.

So if you ask me if I feel stupid or like I've been rebuked by the election results, my answer is no. My reasoning still stands. The 1-3% shift that changes the election result — that's really not a consideration in my view.

And now even though I didn't consider him fit (nor Clinton, we were choosing from two unfit candidates, neither of whom I could support) to be president, now that he's been elected my hope is that he will rise above the things that caused me to consider him unfit and will lead the country well. I have serious concerns. I'll speak up when I see problems. But for now I'm going to hope for the best.

It's Not Tricky: J.D. Is the Best Choice for SBC President

This article originally appeared at SBC Voices.
I'll add my voice to those who have commended all three candidates in this year's presidential election. I don't have anything negative to write about Crosby or Gaines. I even blogged in a recap of last years convention about the positive experience I had meeting and talking with Steve Gaines at last year's convention. I appreciate what I know of both of the other candidates. But as I try to picture a healthy SBC in 10 years, there's no doubt in my mind that J. D. Greear is the best choice to lead us in that direction.

12 years ago Jimmy Draper launched an initiative to engage and develop young leaders and pastors in the convention. That was a hugely encouraging step back in those days.  I remember it as a time when many of us were disillusioned and felt disconnected from the convention itself. I was 24 years old and my first convention was Nashville in 2005. I went away from the pastor's conference wondering if I was even wanted in the SBC. We have come a long way in ten years. Jimmy Draper saw then, and we should see now, that developing, engaging, and recruiting young leaders is one of the keys to a healthy future. I say that as someone who's nearing, or maybe has already passed the young demographic. I need to be involved in helping engage those younger than me.

Greear is the best option to engage young pastors in SBC life. He's led Summit to invest heavily in our cooperative work, with an emphasis in international missions. This along with church planting and theological training, are the elements that will continue to drive the renewed interest we're seeing among leaders.

If we could have asked, back in 2005, what kind of young leaders we would like to develop and see take on leadership in the years ahead, you couldn't have painted a more compelling picture than the work Greear has done at Summit Church.

He's been a helpful voice in convention life for a number of years now. He's refused to get involved in the Calvinism divisiveness. He's invested his own life in taking the gospel to the nations. He's modeled healthy cultural engagement, speaking graciously while standing firm on biblical principles.

When you consider the SBC—not only in 2016, but also in 2026 and beyond—it's clear to me that Greear models where we should be going. And he's the best choice to lead on the journey to get there.