Where Are We; Where Are We Going?

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I was born in Granby, Missouri in 1946, and I only have a small amount of memories of the ‘40’s.  Most of my maturing and developmental years were the 50’s and 60’s.   In those years, influenced by loving and grateful parents, and a nurturing school system that started each day with prayer and a salute to our American Flag, I acquired a great love for America.   Our nation had recently united with other nations in the common cause to end the world of tyranny in WWII.

In the aftermath of this Great War, and ending the rise and control from Germany and Japan, rather than take control and dominance of these rouge nations under their dictators, America helped them to rebuild into productive world citizens.

Most of my life, I have been aware that we in America have had both liberals and conservatives.   And, in my then limited understanding of political structures, I believed they both loved America and were willing to fight for her freedoms and security, either on the battlefield of war or in Congress.

However, today we have the Left and leftists which are not the traditional liberals I grew up among.   They hate America, and all she stands for.  This truth is observed in the ways they are attempting to train or influence our children and grandchildren that it is right, rational and proper to hate America, as well.   The end result they seek is the transformation of America into socialism.   One of their clear agendas is to be totally secular in their mindset and to raise the hatred of Christianity, Judaism and all forms of moral religion to the level of persecution as seen in other socialist/communist countries.

They are systematically turning Americans against each other, through fears of various heightened difficulties such as Covid19 and all its ever-changing rules and protocols.  When that fear began to wane, they took advantage of our weakened state of mind, amid a horrific tragedy of unjustified homicide, by refueling our age-old difficulties of racism.   So now, in our fears and anger hate rises to white hot fevers.   The leftists are dividing and distracting us from standing together for rights and freedoms to fighting in the streets.   They are effectively staging a Civil War where the lines of differences are hard to find.   No more North and South, but possibly from Living Room to Bedroom.   As such, America cannot, and will not stand.

What can we do?     Truth is, we can do little or nothing to change the course of the tidal wave rushing in on America, but Beloved, God can do something.    We must have a heart revival.   Our national heart needs to return to loving and respecting our Holy God.   That will bring new life into the Church, followed by a love for country, truth, justice, family and freedom.

We do have a problem here perhaps.   Allow me to make a few points before you judge.

This past Sunday we celebrated in the Christian Church, Pentecost Sunday.  Many were looking ahead to this event as a turning point where God was going to ignite a great out-pouring of His Spirit to revive the Church and usher in a far-reaching Spiritual Awakening.  However, are we missing something when we lay the burden on God to revive us?

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”  (Acts 2:1-4)

This marks the day when the Holy Spirit of God came and took up permanent residence in redeemed humans.  By doing this, Christ’s Church was born ordained by God.   Pentecost!

“When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, 14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”  (2 Chronicles 7:13-14)

“If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves” . . . humble themselves!   I need to humble myself before a Holy God; even in the midst of others within His Church, I, without reservation become humbled by the awareness of God’s Holy Presence and Glory.  I make myself low.  I do not consider that I have acquired or accomplished anything to be recognized as significant apart from Christ.  I repent of all sinfulness, pride, arrogance, thinking myself better than anyone; I, with sobbing, moaning, and tears I lay my now empty life at the feet of my Savior refusing to arise until all is accomplished within by the Holy Spirit.  Beloved, this is something God is waiting for each of His people to initiate out of the depths of love for their God.

That is where I want to make a few remarks concerning the Church.

We just honored the birth of the Church of the LORD Jesus Christ on this past Pentecost Sunday.  We who are called by His name are the Church, not because we earned our right to be part, but He gave His own Blood to purchase your place within.  Christians all over this land are quick to criticize the Church before the world.  And beloved, the Church is Christ’s treasure!  It is His beloved Bride!   It is Christ’s constant Joy!

Notice the defining phrases used to express our LORD’s love for the Church in Ephesians 5:25-27:

 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the Church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the Word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious Church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.”

Brothers and sisters, in the same way Jesus thanks the Father for the Church, so should you!  We must show our highest regard and love for the Church He died to establish.  Thank your Heavenly Father for the Church!   Make His Church your special Joy!  Love the Church!  Love the members you find within the Church.   When you love people intensely they become a constant source of joy, especially as they begin to respond in kind to your love.   Learn to enjoy the Church.   The Apostle Paul delighted in the Church, so should you!

“Therefore, my beloved and longed-for brethren, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord, beloved.”   (Philippians 4:1)

“ . . . just as it is right for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as both in my chains and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers with me of grace.”   (Philippians 1:7) 

Do you have the people of God in and on your heart?  There in your local Body of Christ, your Church, are the members of that Body in your heart?  They should be.  Do you care for them?  Do you long for them when apart?  Or do you find yourself reacting in negative fashion to attitudes or actions that disappoint you in some of the Church family?  When you do, you close your heart to those persons.  Open your heart to loving the Church people; do not become the negative one that stymies the power of the Church.

Love the Church through your prayers.  Jesus ever lives to intercede for His Church, should you do less?   Beloved, people who are negative, complaining, and critical are not praying for the Church!   You will not act in cruel ways to people you personally spend time in prayer over.   Find time and ways to pray for each other.  The Church that prays for each other, privately and corporately, are not fighting with one another.

Why am I saying all of these things in the face of our troubled times?   First, because the Church needs to be revived, genuinely and supernaturally because our humility before God initiated it; secondly, the world, America, needs to see the true Church in love and power.  Come on, Church . . . Pray On!

 

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