I wanted to address this open letter to my fellow Christians, but I almost cringe to use the title ‘Christian’ because it now seems like a synonym for hypocrite. I would hate to count the number of eye-rolls that accompany the announcement of someone being a Christian. It seems like these days Americans use the term flippantly or manipulatively. But enough on that subject. Let me get to what’s really on my mind.
There’s a lot happening in our country these days. There seems to be an avalanche of rejection descending upon any person or organization associated with the name of Christ while at the same time there is a beckoning door of opportunity for Christ’s name to be glorified in our lives, churches, communities, and country. I am sure you are all aware of the legal attacks upon the Christian bakers and florists, the fresh line of boycotting of Chik-fil-A from Denver, Hobby Lobby’s fight for the freedom to deny funding for contraceptives, and the Texas pastors who fought a subpoena for their sermons. There are many more instances similar to these occurring, as a quick scan of ADF’s case load will quickly reveal (www.adflegal.org). Such circumstances may facilitate one’s belief that our societal atmosphere is more conducive for standing for nothing rather than standing for something. I don’t know about you, though, but reading of these brave believers inspires me to stand a little taller in my faith.
Then we have the Josh Duggar scandals or the maniacs who kill their little ones because Jesus made them do it, or the scam pastors, or the sign-wavers declaring, “Repent or go to hell!” and I want to hide under the nearest rock or at least shout, “That’s NOT an accurate portrayal of Christ!” I get angry and frustrated with people who flaunt the name of Jesus and then proceed to behave in a way that makes a mockery of His holy name. The world is greedily looking for reasons to hate Him; do we have to serve them more on a silver platter, I wonder? Such circumstances may make you want to shake your head and declare, “Uh, uh. I am not one of them.” It certainly prompts me to feel that way.
But then we are confronted with the glaring caverns of moral depravity like Planned Parenthood, and I ask myself, “Where are the Christians now?” You see, our society didn’t simply wake up one day and muse, “Let’s harvest baby parts today.” It was one step down the slippery slope at a time. We Christians tolerated the removal of prayer from schools; we accepted the ease of divorce; we condoned premarital sex, cohabitation, and out-of-wedlock births; we threw our hands up in helplessness as scandal, crime, and libel permeated our government; we reasoned our way through the legalization of abortion; we tolerated the redefinition of marriage and justified the adoption of children by same-sex couples. And now there is a taxpayer-funded industry of harvesting human infant body parts flourishing in our communities. Such circumstances urge me to both weep with shame and scream with rage. How can we pray for God’s mercy and blessing upon us and our nation when we know that such evil is being openly practiced in our land, and we are not doing more to bring an end to it?
Fellow Christ-followers, what are we doing with our time? The Word we claim to love and obey declares that where our treasure is, there will our hearts be also. The expenditure of our time is a reflection of the priorities within our hearts. Are we spending intense time studying the Bible and seeking God’s voice on a daily basis? Are our thoughts layered with meditations upon His nature and His words? Do we lay our stressors before Him and request His wisdom in handling them appropriately? Do we love what He loves and hate what He hates? Plunging into a cause, no matter how justified it might be, does not mean we are on fire for God and accomplishing His will. But avoiding action because it is too political is also not a legitimate excuse for cowardice, apathy, or laziness. Jesus warned us that the world will hate us because it hates Him; He also states that salt that loses its flavor is good for nothing more than to be thrown out into the streets and trampled underfoot. I don’t know about you, but I can handle being hated because the world sees so much of Christ in me that they can’t stand it. However, I have no interest in being trampled underfoot because my witness is nothing more than a joke.
It is time for us stand with our brothers and sisters here and around the world who have counted the cost and are willing to be living sacrifices for our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. They might not be changing government policy or saving the planet, but they are changing the hearts and minds of those around them by being fully surrendered to Jesus. They are not afraid to speak or act as God prompts them to. They know what they believe and it has transformed their lives, even to the point of consuming their lives. That’s what it really means to be a Christian.
All for His service,