PRAY!

I have been thinking a lot lately about where we are as a nation. Things are not looking good for America. It seems that everyday now there is an assault on Christian values. Values, in general, have changed. “Tolerance” is one-sided. We are “commanded” by the world to tolerate the sinful lifestyles, but they don’t tolerate those who choose to accept Scripture. We should not be surprised by this…Jesus told us that we would be hated just as He was hated.

Don’t misunderstand, I’m all for advancing revelation. I’m thankful that the church has moved off of some of the legalistic jargon that was so prevalent just a few short years ago. With that said, I’m concerned that we have abandoned true scriptural admonitions for the sake of convenience and popularity. For instance…it may be more popular to live together without the benefit of marriage, but does that fit with Scripture? It may sound cooler to use language that is suggestive, or crude…but how does that fit with not allowing blessing and cursing to come out of the same mouth?

To turn the tide, holiness must be reintroduced to America. However, I’m not sure that can be done by a group of Christians talking about it. While I’m certainly not opposed to Christians speaking out about their beliefs, I’m just not sure that anyone is listening. And, simply showering unbelievers with love is not going to address the issue of turning away from sinful lifestyles. Nor, am I interested in reintroducing legalistic “lists” that are impossible to maintain. I’m not much of a finger-pointer either. So, what is the church to do? Where do we even start?

It dawns on me that the most effective thing we can do is PRAY. I don’t mean just little “Lay me down to sleep” prayers. I’m talking about intense, directed prayer that specifically targets the sin of our nation. I’m talking about prayer that urges God to change the hearts of our nation…whatever the cost. I’m talking about asking God to change the hearts and logic of our government officials. What would happen if God allowed difficulty to come to the lives of our leaders with the express purpose of changing their hearts? God certainly has used that approach before…just check Biblical history.

I’m reminded of an old song that we used to sing…

It is no secret what God can do.
What He’s done for others,
He’ll do for you.
With arms wide open,
He’ll pardon you.
It is no secret what God can do!

When I was a teenager, I remember my mother praying that God would put me under such conviction for my sinful actions that I would not be able to sleep at night. She prayed that I would become physically ill if I was drinking for the purpose of getting drunk. She didn’t play games with my sin. She understood that hardship would cause me to turn to God. She knew that my soul was hanging in the balance. I know that many would not agree with that particular approach to prayer. But, what other options do we have? The world will not listen to “Christian” reasoning, and even if they listened they could not understand because they are not in covenant with God and His Word.

If my people who are called by my name 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 7:14)

As I think about all that prayer has accomplished throughout history, I am convinced that it is capable of turning the tide. There is no shortage of power. Let there be no shortage of PRAYER!

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