Statement of faith

2 Timothy 3:16-17 "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work." (NIV)

"The Spirit of God uses the Word of God to make us like the Son of God. To become like Jesus, we must fill our lives with his Word.
- Warren

Friday, May 27, 2016

Quiet-Time Reflections

Week of: May 23, 2016                
Sharing by: Pam Crawford

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God."
- Matthew 5:9

UNNECESSARY DEATH                                                                                                                   
With all the political conflict unleashing on television and through social media sites; I think it might be time for the professed Christian to consider a few things critical to our witness before the 2016 Presidential election in November. I say this because very early on it became evident to me that the upcoming election is being used as a tool by the enemy of the soul to divide families, friends, co-workers and general acquaintances. It is nothing new as Satan has been doing it for centuries. Sadly, too often we help him along in his crafty schemes (John 10:10) through the exertion of our personal opinions uttered under the cover of "free-speech." I encourage you to be mindful that this election can and will destroy relationships if we're not careful.  As you ponder this for a moment please consider that our enthusiasm for a particular candidate or lack of it, may be used as a component of dissension. Don't let this election bring about unnecessary death in your relationships. Fight against it daily. It is just not worth it! 

How then can we personally be involved in peacemaking over these next few months leading up to the election? How about before we press those share buttons or spout off about a particular candidate that we may or may not be supporting; we ask ourselves is this person that I have such vigor for really worth the death of a relationship? We can still vote our choice without all the grandeur.With that said I understand the right to support and work for the candidate of your choice. I understand political passions and the desire to help others see the light. I get it! I know we are desiring change but one might ask, at what cost? 

What I am suggesting through this writing is that we consider that our choice for President may or may not be the choice of those we love and do life with and we need to be careful when engaging in conversations face-to-face and on social media. The Bible tells us that our tongues have the power to ignite a forest fire (James 3:5). And, once it starts it is sometimes impossible to rebuild what is lost. How about we ask ourselves another question as we consider peace over conflict? Is it more important that you are right, or that your political party wins in November. Or, is it more important that you work at keeping peace in your world. Stop for just a moment and really answer that question before reading on. 

With that said, let me give you a little ray of hope in all of this especially as professed Christians. Come November 2016 the election will turn out exactly as God has purposed it to. The Scriptures indicate, through the reality of what we see playing out right before our eyes, that God is in the process of moving this earth forward to its final end. I did not say the world is ending, I said we are in process. As believers we know that one day this life does end. But, more importantly, we know that through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and our belief in Him, that our ending on this earth is the first moment of eternity (Acts 16:29-34). That should encourage you and bring a smile to your face. If you don't know this Jesus I speak of and you haven't yet surrendered your life to Him, may I suggest that today might be the greatest opportunity for that introduction as tomorrow is not promised to anyone. I'm not talking about more religion; I am talking about getting to know God in such a manner that life begins to make sense to you and peace becomes a part of your daily living. 

My personal peace in this upcoming election and future elections is found on the pages of Scripture. All throughout history we read about God bringing kings and leaders to power, and we also read about God removing kings and leaders who did evil in His sight. It happened in many different ways and sometimes it took years before justice was rendered. As I have studied the Book of 1 Kings, 2 Kings and Judges I can clearly recognize similarities in America as we know it today. Sometimes I get chillbumps when I see history repeating itself, but I will refrain from fear as God is still very much in control of this world. Instead of fear I will choose to trust that which I cannot understand.

Friends, what can we do as we wait? We can start by continuing to live life to the fullest measure! We can determine in our hearts that we will be obedient children of the Most High God. This means we open up God's Word and we learn everything we can about God; His character, commands and his promises. We connect with a solid Bible teaching church and we worship and serve with all that is in us. And, we share that "Good News" with as many people who will listen. As we do our part we can rest assured that God is handling the details of this crazy, sin-filled, fallen world behind the scenes. Also, if you are parents, bring your children up in the way of the Lord.  Don't just take them to church, be the example of the church (Deuteronomy 6:4-9).

So, instead of arguing out in the public square about something we really don't have control of; how about we simply get on our knees often and ask God to once again bring into power someone who would represent and respect Him before the people of this land? From what I can tell thus far we may not get that answer this time around, but we can pray that somewhere along the way, our country and "We The People" will repent of sin and outward rebellion towards God in order that our country could be healed (2 Chronicles 7:14) and experience spiritual revival. I personally cannot imagine the world my grandchildren will live in if we continue down the path as a culture that blatantly disrespects the Word of God. 
                                                                                                                                                            Make no mistake. In order to become a people of peace we have to be connected to the giver of peace (John 15:5). There is no way around it! Our Creator, LORD and Savior is not a God of dissension and discord, thus it is best that we look to His example as we wait. He did the work of the Father under great persecution and disappointment. It is obvious that there is an evil agenda in America today just as there was in the day of Jesus. The enemy desires that the spirit of Christianity be removed from this earth and he is using you and me to try and bring about just that. We don't have to be pawns in his foolish game. Stand firm in your faith always knowing that what appears to be happening is not the final word (Revelation 20:10-15). The good news as my friend Sherry says is "WE WIN!"

On November 8, 2016 an imperfect human being like you and me will be elected President of The United States of America with or without our vote. They will have promised us the Moon, but we should be prepared to get Mercury (smallest planet). Keep in mind also that either our new leader will be a Christ-follower or they will not be. Without God in the heart of our leaders we can expect business as usual in Washington and all around this country. If the persons heart is important to you examine closely their words, actions, character, history, promises and policies. Pray often for discernment and then privately and without fanfare cast your vote. Remember that whoever you end up selecting will in essence be a representative of you. Final words, choose carefully. 

May God keep His hands of mercy upon us as we pray for revival of this land that many of us call home. May He bring about a spirit of conviction over the hearts of all that He created. 

In Christ by grace,
Pam - God's Not Dead Video

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