Saturday, August 4, 2012

Follow Up~ Our Rights, Our Freedoms, Our Mission

I am sure I disturbed (alienated?) quite a few people the other day with my post. As I said then, my intention was not to accuse or judge why anyone did what they did, but to speak the Truth that God spoke to me. I am learning to accept that....that speaking the Truth in love is what He has asked me to do, and it's going to offend some people..even Christians, or those who think they are Christians. Any doubt of whether that's what He wants was removed this past month as He opened up my Bible, pointed my finger to a passage, and clearly said in that scripture, "You will speak the Truth in love, and some people are not going to like it. You will sometimes walk alone." Yeah. I've been getting that part!! :) So, He gave me an entire week to accept it and get ready!!

I'll just say really quickly here, thank you to those who sent messages, likes, and comments in agreement. It was very encouraging!

I want to follow up on, and maybe clarify what I said, in the last post. After posting an article of something vile that homosexuals planned to do in "retaliation", it was asked (I assume of me, since it was my exact words), "So do you still want to hug them and tell them God loves them?" Do I WANT to? As in does my FLESH want to? No. Their actions are just as offensive to me as they are to everyone else. They offend God; why shouldn't they offend me? I don't watch tv shows with gay couples, I want to shelter my children from that, I vote for politicians who have pro-Biblical values. I certainly do not want our country over-run with what God calls depravity! Someone posted a video of a man harassing a CFA employee, and my immediate reaction was, "JERK!" So, yes, my flesh gets it.

Here's the key, though. What does it matter what *I* want? God didn't call me to do what *I* want. He called me to deny myself, and to take up my cross and follow Him. He didn't say following Him would be comfortable. In fact, He says it will be downright uncomfortable at times. Just like scripture tells us to put away other desires of the flesh, I have to put away my desires and love the ones that some would say are unloveable. Isn't that what Christ did? Isn't that how we are saved? We are black with sin, but Christ loved us, when we were unloveable, and saved us.

People keep saying, "But we must fight them."
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places." (Eph 6:12) We can fight evil on this earth through laws and other means, but that's not where the real battle lies. The only way to fight and win this battle is on our knees, on our face, petitioning OUR King, with our mouths and hands praising. The only way we are going to win the real battle is to be the feet and hands of Christ and love those who walk in darkness enough to be uncomfortable. To stop looking at gays (or any other group/person) in disgust and see them the way Christ does. To put away OUR flesh and take up our cross. 

The other big phrase is, "But, we must defend our rights!" Really? "
But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also." (Matt. 5:39) Your right of free speech? That's a man made right, not a God-given one. Your freedom of religion? Man made. We have been blessed to live in a country where we do have those rights, and we can fight in the courts and law to keep those rights, but the true battle is on our knees. And, the gay people are not our enemy, but the enemy of our souls is our enemy. 

If you wonder, yes, our family has been acquainted with those who are gay. Most are just people like you and me. People who are nice and caring and who love. But, people who are lost from the Truth. There are those who are in-your-face, I know. The extremists, who want to flaunt, and want to attack Christians. Just like there are in-your-face Christians (or so called) who want to pound God's Word into the lost and who blow up abortion clinics. See? The ones you see on the news, are not necessarily the norm. They are everyday people, searching in the wrong places to fill that void. The void has been filled with dark sin and the desires of the flesh.

Not everyone will be called to directly show God's love to a gay person. But you can love them enough to put down your disgust and care for their eternity. To pray for their souls. No one is a lost cause until death. We have become so angry at their sin that I wonder if any Christian ever grieves that they are lost to an eternity of damnation. 

Supporting CFA and their pro-family values (which actually also covered divorce!) was good intentions turned bad. Had it just stayed as, "Let's support a business that is run by people with Christian values and show them our support", that would have been fine. But, it didn't stay that way for many. It became, "See THAT, world! You aren't going to step on our RIGHTS. Liberals, you should tremble in fear. Watch out in Nov." That's where God's voice left. What started out as one man's focus on God, turned into the mass' focus on US...our rights. And the good intentions of many, were drowned out by the shouts. I don't believe any real good was done. Yes, we showed our numbers, yes we showed we would not be stepped on. But was anyone's heart reached? That's where true victory lies.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Why Am I SO Happy Chck-Fi-A Day is Over?

I seriously thought I might scream if I saw one more photo or post about Chick-Fil-A yesterday. At first I wondered if maybe I was just grumpy and tired of seeing every other post being about it. I couldn't figure it out, and it nagged at me all day. Something inside me just would not settle, and I finally realized last night it was the Holy Spirit. The reason it took me so long is that my brain kept asking, "Isn't this what we're supposed to be doing?" Defending Biblical values? My Spirit kept grieving. Why wasn't I on board and wishing I could run to get my chicken?

Let me say right off, I am not saying you were wrong to go to Chick-Fil-A. I am not saying we should not defend Biblical values when they are under attack by the government or press, even. Our family completely supports Biblical values, and we support free speech for all beliefs...not just theirs. I am not pointing my finger directly at you, either. I am simply addressing why my Spirit was grieving yesterday, and the words that God gave me to express.

The Bible clearly states that homosexuality is WRONG. That's not ME judging, that's GOD! Not only that, He has some pretty strong words about it in Romans 1:26-28. He gives them over to a depraved mind. God is not playing around. "Those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them."  BUT, GOD! Look at Romans 2:1. He tells us to be VERY careful about judging others. Watch the hypocrisy! When we make a judgement that someone is in sin, and GOD (not our own self righteousness) puts it in our hearts to confront that sin with them, we'd better make very sure that we are doing that in love and in order to bring them to, or restore them to, a right relationship with God. Not to pass judgement. Then look at verse 4! It speaks of God's kindness, tolerance (with people~not sin), and patience, and that His kindness leads to repentance. 

He gives them (and quite a few others listed there) to their depravity, but He gives time to come to repentance.  How will they come to repentance? By the love and kindness of God. How do they know the love and kindness of God? Yep. Through His children. How will we show them the love and kindness of God if we are pointing our fingers, calling them names, pumping our fists in the air because, by golly, the good guys scored a point yesterday?

Mr. Cathy did nothing wrong in answering a question about his company's beliefs. He answered in a Godly manner. I admire that. The press took off with it and twisted it. But, did God's people respond in such a way that showed the love of God to those who will anguish eternally if they do not turn away from the depravity and to their creator?

I can tell you. Those who are or support homosexuality did not see the love of God yesterday. I saw the comments. They grieved me. I am not naive. I understand that they always say we are haters just because we don't agree with them. But, do they have a point? Do they ever see anything but disgust from the Christian? Do they ever see love from the Christian? While we may not hate them, do we turn our nose up at them? Do we form relationships with them in order to share the Good News (that we never would have had except for the mercy of God)? While we're condemning their actions, have we ever been the light of Jesus, instead of the finger pointer? "Love your neighbor as yourself." The second greatest commandment. Have you ever hugged a homosexual and told them God loves them? Have they ever seen love and worth from Christian eyes? Have you ever prayed...committed and long term...for a homosexual? The 2nd greatest commandment! It's our commission from Christ! 

Love does not mean we accept the behavior, it does not mean we don't hold them accountable. But, just like every other sin in this fallen world, it is going to come through relationship. We are not going to post anything on facebook or stand in any line and win the hearts of the lost. We will win their hearts for Christ when they consistently see our love of Christ played out in our lives through loving them. Then we will have their ear.

Our voice was heard yesterday. Was God's?

I do believe we must take a stand against sin in this world. We must not allow it to take hold of our lives and our country. But when we take a stand, we must make sure that that stand is accompanied by the words or actions that tell the lost world of a Savior who died for them. They must know that He loves them and longs for them to turn to Him.

Don't feel you need to defend yourself here. I am well aware of the defense. Go before God. Get into His presence. Talk to Him about it. Ask Him what He wants your response to be. If He says, "Well done", then that's all that matters. I do not judge that. I have only expressed what I believe He has spoken to me and the grieving of my Spirit about our witness to a lost and dying world.