Truth and Love

My heart breaks as I see America slowly being destroyed from within.  Her own people are hating her.  How disheartening to watch!

Not only am I saddened, but I also have waves of anger that come over me.  It is easy to get caught up in the frenzy of bickering on social media.  The people who are sick of seeing America go downhill feel they need to speak up about these issues, and they do.  However, there is a right and wrong way to go about it.

The Truth in Love

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Ephesians 4:15 reminds us to speak the truth, but to do so with love.  We can be firm in our stance and stand for what is good and right without becoming catty and rude.  When we become like those who are screaming and shouting, we are setting no example of godliness to others.

Trust me, there is no judgement. I have been involved in several heated discussions in which I had to finally just choose to stop engaging in the argument.  Yes, consequences must be enforced to the lawless, but they must be enforced by those with the authority to do so.  (I am not telling you that you should not defend yourself if physically attacked. I am only saying we do not need to engage in heated discussion and arguments.)

Quick to Hear, Slow to Speak, Slow to Anger

James 1:19 gives clear instruction about the way we should react to certain situations.  If we are easily angered, it is best not to speak until we know that we will remain calm.  Trust me, I have uttered many rash words only to regret them later.

Sometimes, listening and making certain we have the facts can prevent a great deal of trouble.  So many false reports are being circulated.  Christians, we do not need to help circulate what is false.  Check your sources before you post or spread certain news items.

Guard Your Words

Proverbs 13:3 tells us that if we guard our words, we are guarding our lives.  Loose lips sink ships, so to speak.  We want to avoid speaking too rashly because we bring ruin to our lives and reputations.

In the second chapter of Daniel, the king issued an order for all of Babylon’s wise men to be executed.  When Daniel was told of this, he used wisdom when he spoke to those around him.  He was not rash with his words.  He did not allow his emotions to dictate him, and it saved his life.

Prayer and the Holy Spirit

Prayer is the key to all of the change America needs.  While we need to speak out as necessary, and speak with wisdom, we need to be on our knees in prayer.  We must cry out to God for revival and intervention.  We must pray for our government leaders whether or not we like them or agree with them.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you,. Matthew 6_33, KJV.
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Matthew 6:33 says to seek God’s kingdom first.  This might not be popular, but God’s kingdom comes before our nation.  When we seek God’s kingdom and righteousness before all else, He will move in situations that concern us.  The American church has put the kingdom of God on the back-burner for too long.  It is time to promote the kingdom and trust God to heal our nation.

Body of Christ: UNITE!

Recently, I posted a video on You Tube and Facebook entitled A Call for Unity Among the ChurchesThat call for unity is the cry of my heart, and I believe it is the cry of the Father’s heart.  So, what keeps us from being in unity?

I believe that is the direct result of a misunderstanding of what unity is.  First, it is not a heretical request.  The Bible speaks plainly of the church being in unity.  Paul’s teachings are clear that the church body, as a whole, is one.  Jesus agonized in the Garden of Gethsemane for unity among believers (See John 17).

So, what is the problem?  It goes back to a misunderstanding of the term.  Unity does not equal uniformity.  Unity does not equal the embrace of false doctrine.  Unity does not mean you have to agree with another Christian on absolutely everything. Unity means the following:  “Although I do not see everything as my brother or sister in Christ does, I still love Jesus enough to be in unity for the common goal of winning souls to Christ.”

Unity Requires Sacrifice

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Many people do not want to fellowship with Christians outside of their own church or denomination because it requires sacrifice.  Time has to be given to come in unity with someone.  Effort has to be made.  However, I believe the time and effort is worth the end result.

Our nation is in trouble.  As a matter of fact, our world is in trouble.  Now that the fear of COVID-19 has somewhat dwindled, another pandemic has taken its place.  It is not a physical sickness, but it does yield physical results.  The pandemic is hatred.  It’s companion is fear.  People are rebelling against authority in the name of “tolerance” while others are blatantly racist because of hatred and fear. These things do not please God.

Unity Requires Selflessness

I believe the call for selflessness is what hinders many Christians.  In our quest for prosperity and name-it-claim-it doctrines, we have overlooked the words of Jesus in Luke 9:23, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.”  Jesus did not call us to be self-absorbed.  He called us to think of others.  He called us to love others.

The fate of our nation lies with the church, the true body of Christ.  If we want to see people stop looting and rioting, we need to demonstrate unity.  Let’s face it, the world has watched us squabble over doctrine for centuries. It has turned many away from the faith.  While I am not suggesting we take up that which is not scriptural, I am suggesting that we learn to agree that we disagree but show love to one another.

Body of Christ, we do not have to agree on everything to unite in prayer and intercession.  We do not have to agree on everything to go to heaven together.  We do not have to agree on everything to love one another as Jesus commanded us.

Unity Requires Laying Aside Some Differences

Some of the differences between God’s people that cause division are almost laughable.  Certainly, we are entitled to follow our convictions, but some convictions should not become an expectation for everyone else.So it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.ng

For example, some believe the King James Bible is the best translation of God’s word while others read different translations.  I have seen people become angry over this issue and act ungodly because someone likes another translation besides the “revered one”.  By the way, that can apply to any translation so I am not just throwing this at one group.

Some other examples of what should not cause us to divide are as follows:

  • Bickering over spiritual gifts and their usage.
  • Bickering over end-time beliefs (i.e. pretrib rapture, post-millennialism, etc.)
  • Roles of women in the church.

I am not suggesting that you have to take up someone else’s belief nor am I suggesting you even have to go to church with someone of a different denomination.  However, I am saying it it time for God’s people to lose the attitude of superiority we hold over each other and become humble again.

Does this sound too difficult?  If so, how do you feel about watching our nation crumble?  Which is worse?  Swallowing your pride and uniting with your brothers and sisters in Christ, or watching America fall?  I should think the choice would be obvious.

Let’s come together and pray and be sanctified so many can be saved.

Watch my You Tube video A Call for Unity Among the Churches here.

One Lord One Faith One Baptism Ephesians 4_5

Prayer with Praise

I had the privilege of going with my dad last weekend to a church in which he ministers on a regular basis.  On the rare occasions that I do go with him, I always find the people very warm and welcoming.  The presence of the Lord is always experienced, and we usually find humor in some situation to enjoy.

As my dad preached, he began discussing the frequency in which God’s people often forget to praise God during prayer.  “You need to offer something sweet,” my father said referring to praise.  Instead of simply asking God to do this or do that, we need to praise Him for who He is and thank Him for the past prayers that He has answered.

Praise in Battle

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Most of us are familiar with the story of King Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah in 2 Chronicles 20.  The people of Judah were facing some deadly enemies.  Immediately, the people sought the Lord, which is always the first step that should be taken in any crisis.  People began to hear from the Lord, and the consensus was that God would deliver them as He had before.

King Jehoshaphat appointed singers to go in the front line of the battle, singing, “Praise the Lord for His mercy endures forever.”  Their enemies became confused and began slaughtering each other rather than the people of Judah.  After all was said and done in the battle, the people of Judah took spoils from their enemies.

The Results of Our Praise

When you and I offer praises to God, even when it is the last thing we wish to do, we will find that our situations are not as big as they seem.  We will find that our spiritual enemies flee because they become confused.  We will find that we are taking spiritual spoils from our enemies

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According to Isaiah 43:19, the Lord does new things.  He makes a way where there seems to be none.  The entire chapter of Isaiah 43 is filled with reasons to praise God.  Throughout the chapter, God promises to bring His people victory over their enemies.  Most of all, He declares His love for us.  He vows that He has blotted out our sins and transgressions.  He is holy and cannot allow sin in His presence, yet, He redeems us from our sin through Jesus Christ and calls us righteous in his sight

 

What Will You Offer?

Although it is perfectly fine to offer your petitions and requests before God in prayer, it is vital to remember to offer something sweet.  Do not simply use prayer as a “give me, give me” session.  God is so much more than our personal genie.  Use your prayer time to give honor and praise to God.  Use scripture when you are not sure of what to say.  The Psalms and many passages in Isaiah offer many words of praise and worship.

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Jesus gave us an example of how to pray in what we know as the Lord’s prayer.  The model prayer begins with praise then goes into various petitions then ends with an acknowledgement of who God is.  Certainly, we do not want to become legalistic in our prayers, but we do want to take time to offer praise to our God.  He is worthy!

A Call to Prayer

The subject of prayer is one that has been widely explored in Christian circles, yet no one could ever say too much on the subject.  Prayer is how we speak to the Lord.  There are varying types of prayers such as prayers of praise, thanksgiving, petition, and intercession.  It can be the highlight of our day, or, sadly, it can become a mundane, repetitious act that we perform out of obligation.  It is sad to say that, with many people, it often becomes the latter rather than the former.

The Purpose of Prayer

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Certainly, no one could say specifically why God has ordained prayer in the manner that He has.  Yes, He wants a relationship with us, and, of course, prayer draws us closer to Him through Jesus Christ.  However, there is a mystery to prayer.  In Daniel 10:12, we are told that Daniel’s prayer was heard the first time he made his petition, but some type of war in the heavenly places delayed his answer.

In 1 Samuel 1, Hannah desperately desired children.  She poured out her heart to God, and her request was granted.  It would also be interesting to note that the priest thought she was drunk.

In the New Testament, Jesus had some things to say on the subject.  He gave His disciples instruction as to prayer.  A pattern was given, yet, He warned them to avoid vain repetition.  Jesus was not saying we could not repeat prayer requests because He told the parable of the unjust judge and the widow.  The widow persisted in her request for the judge to relieve her of her adversary.  The judge finally granted her request because of her persistence.

Prayer Is Spiritual Warfare

Persistent and strategic prayers are a part of our spiritual warfare.  After Paul explained each part of the armor of God, he concluded his discourse by making a reference to prayer.  Although we do not totally understand it, prayer moves the heart of God.  Prayer changes circumstances.  Prayer makes the impossible possible.

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Of course, we can not take any credit.  The glory belongs to the Lord.  He established this way of communication for which I am completely thankful.  Although God is sovereign, He gives us choice.  We must choose to participate in our relationship with Him.

Back to Prayer

When God’s people pray, mountains are moved.  Nations are spared of judgment.  People are saved, delivered, and healed.  There was a time when people prayed for long periods of time, not caring who heard them.  While I am not saying that you have to pray for a certain amount of time, I do believe we need to sacrifice time to pray for our nation, our world, our leaders, and each other.  Sometimes, it means spending less time on another activity.  Whatever the cost, we must be willing to spend time in prayer.  Jesus did, and He is our example.

 

If you do not have a relationship with Jesus Christ, you can have it today.  Romans 10:9-10 (MEV) states the following:  “That if you confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved, for with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth is made unto salvation.”

Will You Stand in the Gap?

I love my country.  The United States has always been my home, therefore, I have great patriotic feelings toward this land.  The United States of America is a blessed nation.  God’s hand has been on her from her beginning.  I am afraid that God will eventually allow our nation to reap the fruit of her deeds.

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What is troubling is the sight of our nation going further down the slope of immorality.  The immorality that I am speaking of is not the building of a wall.  My intention is not to demean anyone because that is not of God, but there comes a time when the truth must be spoken.  It is my intention to speak the truth with as much love and humility as possible.

For many years, immorality has slowly taken over our nation.  I will not list all of the nation’s sins in this post except one.  There is one that is becoming more blatant and celebrated, and that is the killing of innocent babies. When such an atrocity is disguised as a woman’s right, I feel such sadness in my spirit.

The Gap

America needs a turn around.  I realize that the latest abortion ruling took place in the State of New York, but the responsibility falls on us as a nation.  Since Roe v. Wade in the 1970’s, people have been desensitized by the enemy of our souls to the sanctity of human life.   Like any other sin that has not been covered by the blood of Jesus, the act of aborting human babies has become more blatant and celebrated.  Although I feel anger and sadness over this issue, hating the culprits will not solve the problem.

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In Ezekiel 22:30, the Lord was looking for someone to stand in the gap for another straying nation.  What is meant by standing in the gap?  Intercession through prayer is how we can stand in the gap for our nation.  There are cases in the Bible in which the prayers of God’s people changed the most dire of circumstances.

Of course, standing in the gap might also include speaking the truth in love at certain times.  I am not saying that you must get a picket sign and go scream at someone, but I am asking you to seek the Lord about ways you can stand up for the rights of unborn children.  If your actions are led by the Holy Spirit, you will not be wrong.  Fast, pray, and then take the action that the Lord might be leading.  It could be writing a letter, sending an email, or making a telephone call to any one of the parties who can bring change.  On a more challenging level, the Lord might be calling someone to adopt a baby, or help a single mother who is struggling.

Will You Stand?

I am challenging you to spend time praying for our nation and leaders.  The individual states have certain rights, but these states are still part of one nation.  When babies are being killed, and now can be killed up to birth, it is time for everyone to get involved.  These are our children.  They are the future!  If Jesus Christ does not return, life will go on even after you and I are gone.  We need young people!  We can not afford to write off the lives of our unborn babies as if they are nothing.

Pray for change to come to this situation.  Pray for repentance and revival to rise up in our land. God cares about these unborn babies.  He knows each of them, and He has not forgotten them.  Proverbs 6:17 speaks against the shedding of innocent blood.  Jeremiah 1:5 proves that God has a plan for every life that is put into a womb.

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Certainly, I do not have all the answers to the problem, but I know God does.  I also know that this type of post is unusual for this blog, but I have to speak someway.  I want to do all I can to stand in the gap for our nation and for the unborn.  Will you stand in the gap too?