A Pastor’s Heart to the Church

I wanted to share a bit of my heart with you tonight. We have had a grueling past few months of an election cycle. Actually the past few years seems like one bad story after another. I feel like we have been through one hell of a knock-down, drag-out fight. I suppose it is OK for me to use hell in this context, because what we have experienced seems to have been birthed by the beings destined to go there. This has been one huge attack on the church, and probably not in the way you think.

Elections are difficult, they always have been. But the events of the past year have been greatly magnified by the media and social media. Its easy to want to point fingers after the year we have had, but if you point them in the wrong way you only become part of the problem. It’s easy to point them at the opposing political party. When you think about it, that is the vast majority of what is being shared on your news channels, and in your social feeds. Can you imagine what impact the constant bombardment of negative news has on the human mind? Paul tells us in Philippians to think on good things. Perhaps we should rewrite Phil 4:8 for 2020?

Finally, brothers, whatever is a lie, whatever dishonors, whatever fraudulent, whatever is dirty, whatever is horrible, whatever is reprehensible, if there is any poor quality, if there is anything worthy of criticism, think about these things. – Not Paul

This isn’t a “shame on you” article, but we also have to accept some blame for how our society is behaving. At a minimum, we must call in to question our own unkind words and posts. And we must also take responsibility for how we allow the world to affect us. Put the right stuff in your mind and you’ll feel better.

I really want to share some hope with you. We must remember as Christians it is not our job to make a Christian America. It is not our job to make Israel 2.0. John 18:36 says this: “Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” There was a political mess in Jesus day also, and even some of His own disciples wanted to set up an earthly Kingdom. Jesus taught against this. He said His disciples would not lash out in physical demonstrations against the America of His day (Rome). The kingdoms of this world are corruptall of them. They are human kingdoms, with Satan at the helm.

The Democrat and Republican parties are both human establishments, built on human kingdoms. They are both flawed. I’ve said this at least a hundred times over the past yearIt’s not wrong to support America, or vote and participate in the political process. God has given you a voice and the freedom within our great country to mold and make it the best it can be. If you are passionate about abortion then vote against it. If you are passionate about gun rights then vote for them. If you don’t want socialism then vote it down. Pray and participate, but don’t confuse an American right with a Christian calling. It is not our mandate to join one of these kingdoms and fight against the other. Instead, our mandate is to pull people out of those broken systems and into God’s spiritual Kingdom.

It does not matter who is in the White HouseGod is on the Throne. It does not matter what form of Government we haveconstitutional republic, democracy, monarchy, socialist, communist. God is still on the throne. He has an ultimate plan for His Church and for you individually. Trust in that plan. I don’t know what the kingdoms of this world will look like in 2021, but I do know that if God is for us, Nobody can be against us. Don’t be discouraged. Instead of criticizing the other side, pray that God would open a door for you to minister to themto bless them. You of all people CHURCH have the answer and it’s not even related to the ballot box. Love God. Love People. Trust Him to guide you.

One final thought concerning the state of the Church. Revelation chapters 2 and 3 speak of two churches that seem to be polar opposites. The church at Smyrna was going through hardships and persecution. John says, I know your tribulation and your poverty, but you are rich. The Laodicean church on the other hand seems to have it allno persecution and great physical wealth and blessings. Then John speaks of that church and says it is so lukewarm that God is about to spit it out of His mouth. What a contrast. It seems that when the Church has hard times it shines, and when it has an abundance of blessings it becomes lazy and indifferent. The American church has had many blessings. I think God has used our great land to touch many, and we have freedoms that make other nations envious. James tells us to count it all joy when we enter into diverse trials because it grows our faith. God has not forgotten His Church, nor has he forgotten you. Be encouraged that no matter what we face tomorrow our God is still in control. And in the end, if it takes a little hardship for the American Church to shine brightlyI’m all for it.