I voted yesterday.
On Sunday, I told my children that voting is almost a spiritual experience for me. It is an honor to gather with fellow citizens to participate in such an important process—the foundation of a democratic system of government. I feel a form of reverence as I engage in a process by which every citizen of my country can make their voice heard.
When King Mosiah abolished the monarchy in the land of Zarahemla, he not only warned the people of the dangers of an unrighteous king, but he also pointed out the heavy burden borne by a righteous king:
All the travails of soul for their people, and also all the murmurings of the people to their king….
And he told them that these things ought not to be; but that the burden should come upon all the people, that every man might bear his part.Mosiah 29:34-35
When I participate in an election, I feel some of that burden. I can’t blame my problems on the government, because the government is chosen by the people. I and my neighbors who gathered at a local church to vote yesterday, together with millions of other citizens across the country, made our voices heard, just as the Nephites did under their new system of government:
They assembled themselves together in bodies throughout the land, to cast in their voices concerning who should be their judges, to judge them according to the law which had been given them; and they were exceedingly rejoiced because of the liberty which had been granted unto them.Mosiah 29:39
I know there’s a lot of concern about election integrity these days, and it is important to establish appropriate controls to make the process as easy and accurate as possible. But what I saw yesterday is what I’ve seen in every election I’ve participated in: good people gathering in an orderly, respectful way to make their voices heard. I don’t know how the other people in line with me voted, and I really don’t care. We were all there because we wanted to fulfill our duty as shared owners of this country and because we respected the right of every other shared owner to do the same.
Now it is not common that the voice of the people desireth anything contrary to that which is right; but it is common for the lesser part of the people to desire that which is not right; therefore this shall ye observe and make it your law—to do your business by the voice of the people.Mosiah 29:26
November is a month for gratitude. I am grateful to live in a country which aspires to let every voice be heard, a country in which every man and woman bears accountability for our collective success, and in which we respect the voices of the people around us. That is what I saw and felt as I voted yesterday, and that is why I continue to have faith in the future of my country.