Handhewn 1860′s Log Church in Gilmer County, West Virginia
I pass Job’s Temple everyday going to and from my office. Although I have no ties to it, it’s actually in the county my husband was raised in, I’m still drawn to it. I love that God has preserved this old place of worship and I have to wonder what the saints of God that labored to build it would think about the Country they’d just fought for. For six years it sat unfinished while the civil war raged around it and was completed in 1866. They had strong political views then too, although I doubt they were as self-promoting as the United States today. I try to imagine the first service following the war. No doubt some that worshipped there had lost family in the battle, death was a harsh reality. It was battle on their own soil; fear had been present daily. Peace was sweet.
Word traveled to America in the same era that upward of 10,000 Christians were massacred in Syria by Islamic forces. But on American soil, on at least three occasions, President Lincoln proclaimed public fast days when he urged Americans to go to their houses of worship, to confess their sins humbly to the Almighty, and to ask God’s blessing. There may have been some that gathered at the site of the incomplete Job’s Temple, who prayed and fasted as their leader had ask… my how far we’ve come. While on foreign soil Christians were martyred for their faith, on American soil Christians where memorialized. There was no CNN or nightly news that broadcast images only belated newsprint that would make it’s away around eventually.
But the people of Job’s Temple were likely more concerned about their own soil than that of another nation. They had their own issues to contend with. They could not even imagine a day that America wouldn’t be a Christian nation and Islamic attacks would be an issue. What a difference 150 years can make.
One of my favorite verses has been brought to mind multiple times, I even tried using another for this post and then finally with God’s gentle prodding and these words being recalled to my mind again and again, I knew I’d better listen.
Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein.
Three directions from God: Stand, See and Ask.
I’m reminded this morning of those men and women who throughout the years have stood on the foundational old paths of Christian faith. There are many still standing, regardless of what media reports.
I have Job’s Temple, an historic land mark that reminds me of a time when our nation was led by Christian values in the church house and in the White House. It could happen again if we’d take President Lincoln’s advice and confess our sins humbly to Almighty God and ask Him to bless this nation again. The arrogance of our leadership is set on destruction and we set knowing what needs to be done and yet doing nothing. Even those of us who are still on the path are not walking, we’re just waiting. It’s not biblical.
Isaiah 40:31 says “But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Wait is not to stand still, but to serve and to walk. Ever moving forward to the Kingdom of God.
We may or may never have the opportunity to go to Capitol Hill and speak our minds but we have a greater hill than that.
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.