There are a lot of difficult things going on in our world.
Baltimore: Protests, Riots, Accusations of Police Brutality and ‘Thuggery’.
Washington, D.C.: Supreme Court decisions re: Marriage; Corruption in politics at the highest levels.
Middle East and Africa: The ‘Islamic State’ and it’s partners taking a ‘convert or die’ message out to the masses.
These things cry out for a solution!
They are complex, difficult issues, however…how can we begin to ‘solve’ them?
It can seem so overwhelming that we simply give up and hope for Jesus to come back and take us away.
He may do that, and it may be soon.
But what if it’s not?
Are we to bury our heads in the sand, or to isolate ourselves hoping to be kept ‘immune’ from the issues or threats?
In fact, I would say that we are not only called to be actively engaged, but we are increasingly being FORCED to do so!
Dietrich Bonhoeffer said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil: God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.”
In the Old Testament, the book of Esther records the story of a young woman who was thrust into a situation that was overwhelming. She was suddenly chosen to be Queen of Persia, just at a time when a threat to the very existence of her own people–the Jews–was growing. Would she try to keep her head down, hide her ethnicity, and hope for the best, or would she engage in the battle?
Her uncle, Mordecai, reminds her that all of these events–including her in the position she was in–were in God’s hands.
“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14)
In other words, ‘Don’t be fooled, Esther–you can’t remain silent and aloof. You WILL be part of this situation, no matter what you do…but God has put you where you are for this very moment, this very situation.’
I believe that God had put us–His children–in this world at this time for this specific situation.
Whereas each one of these situations listed is complex, the answer is really quite simple: A Return to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, allegiance to His Word and being led by the Holy Spirit.
In other words, the Church Being The Church–loving, gracious, but uncompromising.
The Church leading Dads and Moms into leading their families again–setting examples of hard work, integrity, and family structure and reaping the relational, educational and economic benefits of doing so.
The Church leading those in authority to stand on Biblical principles, committing themselves to leading with integrity and honesty, using their authority for good, not for evil. Putting the good of the people before their own ambitions.
The Church leading marriages by God’s design–Husbands and Wives committing to each other for life, living out their faith in front of their kids (and society), training the next generation in the way they should go. Not redefining ‘marriage’ and ‘family’ because of society’s desires, but recommitting to living these things out according to God’s plan.
The Church leading its people–God’s children, by faith in Jesus–to overcome any and all obstacles by firm conviction, confidence in God’s power, boldness in the face of threats, and demonstrations of radical love and grace in the midst of persecution.
It is the same Solution that Paul spoke of when he said, “For I am not ashamed of this Good News about Christ. It is the power of God at work, saving everyone who believes—the Jew first and also the Gentile. This Good News tells us how God makes us right in his sight. This is accomplished from start to finish by faith. As the Scriptures say, “It is through faith that a righteous person has life.” (Romans 1:16-17)
The Gospel…the Good News about Jesus.
He still offers us The REAL Solution.
CHURCH, let’s embrace it fully, share it lovingly, and proclaim it boldly!
It is THE solution!