Monday, July 17, 2017

Dare To Be Preachy

Sooner or later I'm going to die, unless of course, Jesus comes back and takes me to heaven before that happens.  I'm rooting for the latter.  I don't fancy that my life has impacted many except for my own immediate family.  There will be no monuments to my name, no great hall of fame, no television dramas or movies when I die.  There will only be my witness to those my life has touched.   There are songs that I've written that I hope have blessed others and maybe inspired them to trust the Lord, but when my body is cold, likely the memory of me for most people will be cold too.  If I must die, however, my hope is that those that I leave behind who know me, will be able to say with confidence, "She loved the Lord with all her heart and she also loved me."

Those who really know me know that the shallow things in life hold little interest for me, save for issues that deal with bettering our health and wellness physically.  Most often my mind has been on eternal things.   I have allowed God's Word to shape my life, my opinions, my sense of justice, my morality, my politics and my parenting.  Because of that I'm sure I've lost a few "friends" along the way.  But I'm not so mournful about a relationship lost when the relationship itself is so shallow that it can be lost.  I've learned that I can only do my best to love and be faithful, and if in the end a person is intent on going in a direction different from the one I am going, it is best to hold lightly and leave them in the hands of the Father, who's Spirit alone can draw them to the place on which my heart is set.

The entire world is hell bent on invalidating and making impotent the idea of an eternal God.  Since my childhood I have listened to hostile people hurl accusations against God's faithful.  The intensity of their hatred has only grown throughout the years and where there at one time may have been a line that no one was willing to cross, in these latter days that line is now gone.  It's a no-holds-barred society of vicious, teeth-gnashing hatred and violence toward the Truth and anyone who would share it.  Those hostile to the gospel reject any kind of testimony,  scornfully accusing Christians of being "preachy" in an effort to shut them up.  Even the quiet Christian who minds his own business in the work place is made to feel intimidated by hateful coworkers who disapprove of his unwillingness to join in their wicked banter, because even the Christian's silent witness is too loud for the wicked.

We are intentionally being pushed back, forced to retreat to closed doors and soon, I fear, shuttered windows.  But for now, in the United States of America we have a freedom to speak.  And no one here who knows the truth should let themselves be intimated into silence.  It is our freedom and our responsibility to speak.  Because the truth is LIFE.  And there are many who would yet choose eternal life if they only had the Truth shared with them.

I'm not going to say that there is no cost in sharing the Truth.  There is.  And sometimes you will lose people you love because of it.  Our Enemy is not gentle in his battle against us.  It is his goal to hurt us in the most painfully personal way he can.  Family and friends are fair game in the battle to silence and disempower the Children of God.  Consider yourself warned.  But also consider how greatly powerful the testimony of redemption is!  It is totally worth it.  There is no system that will allow us to know how a person will react to hearing our testimonies.  There is only the hope that maybe someone will hear what we have to say and believe.

Teaching God's redeemed that they can live holy lives is also a worthy endeavor.  It was the hope in this promise that freed me from the bondage of sin after I believed.  Satan doesn't just want to keep us from being saved.  He also wants to keep us from being over-comers.  I think I've had more resistance to the message of holiness from people than I've had to the message of redemption itself.  People, even Christians, don't like to think of themselves as sinners who need to change.  For the unbeliever, this message is impossible because they do not have the power to change.  But for the believer, they have the very power of Christ Himself to overcome any sin. God does not suddenly sanctify our evil deeds making them not evil just because we believe in Him.  Sinning is still evil and God has equipped each of His Children with the power to break what ever bondage we might be in.

In my opinion, preaching the truth is one of the most loving things a Christian can do.  The world, and even people in church may accuse you of being "preachy" attaching a negative connotation to it.  That is merely a tactic used to silence the message of freedom in Christ.  If you live in the United States of America, or any other country where you have the freedom of speech, please do not waste this freedom.  Speak up!  Dare to be preachy!  Let them hear the truth from your lips and see the good deeds that accompany your words so that they will believe!  Give others the same chance Christ is giving you right now as you read my words.

When I die I'll walk through those pearly gates with the hope that I did my best and took every opportunity to speak deep things to you...eternal things that matter.  And I hope that someone, anyone will choose to worship Jesus with their whole heart because I dared to be preachy.  To God be the glory!