The Purpose Pastor Terry Jones Quran-burning Served
Freddie Steel – 09-11-10
If you want to hide something, plant it in plain view of everyone. Humans can miss the obvious.
The Koran-burning episode has ushered in a new era: an era more exact and prophetic according to Biblical eschatology than many other recent developments I have followed closely.
Our nation has a soul and it is in an emotional crisis. Tensions are high and people’s resources are depleted – mental, emotional, spiritual and financial resources are in need of resupply. Most of the nation is running on empty with a hair-thin trigger holding the hammer of explosive emotional release and violence per person. And, as Scripture tells us, if the ‘head’ is unsound, the whole body is unsound. What more aptly describes Washington than that?
Preparing For That Certain Man Who Has the Answers
The new phase was introduced when Defense Secretary Gates telephoned Pastor Terry Jones (the pastor planning the Kuran book burning). It hit me squarely and soundly, that a visible, high-profile governmental / military leader has stepped in to offer appeasement and mediatorial guidance for our nation surrounding a religious issue. There it is! For me, this is the first underpinnings for the work of the End-Times False Prophet that has been foretold in Bible prophecy, now beginning to be erected. No, I’m not suggesting that Defense Secretary Gates is the false prophet of Bible prophecy, but Secretary Gates’ interdiction is exactly what the false prophet will do and this event is the first installment that is leading to ‘that’ person’s ascent.
On the other end, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad believes his role is similar to that of John the Baptist who ushered in the arrival of Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah, with his message and preaching. Ahmadinejad believes that he is to usher in the Muslim Madi – their messiah – by creating all of the turmoil and confusion as possible. Check it out. And, it is that spirit surrounding Islam that is captivating the minds of Americans at all strata and rather effectively removing the Church from the harvest that is waiting to be reaped. Whatever well-meaning event or occurrence that distracts you from moving into and helping to reap the harvest is a distraction that will cost someone for eternity.
A strategy and posture must be developed and engagegd that addresses today’s threats but also keeps us focused on eternity.
So, whilest we are being spurious in our debates and the soul of the nation is being embroiled, we miss that which is obvious, hidden right in front of our eyes.
We Weren’t Called To First Fix It
The obvious is that it can’t be fixed! There is no human answer that is being currently utilized – especially the striving with one another that inflames the passions and embitters the nation’s soul. What do we then do?
First, start at the bottom – the grass roots level. The ‘head’ is terribly sick (politics). So, change must come at the grass roots level by the utilization of less overt steps of healing and restoration. Some suggestions are:
a. Stop Striving: Scripture tells us that the servant of God must NOT strive. In other words, the more we strive one with another, the more emotional, mental and spiritual energy is being spent, energy that we more desperately need to face the everyday challenges of life;
b. People are Not My Problem: You are not my problem. When I learned to embrace that truth, excuses flew out the window, excuses for why I can’t do something positive or why I can’t be happy and contented right now;
c. Don’t Try To Fix People: God has not called me to try to fix everything that I see that is wrong in life or people. I have learned not to tread and walk where I have not been graced to be. Consequently, for the sake of the Kigdom of God and it’s prevailing peace that is my right and prize, I have learned to look beyond the current issue that could exist between myself and another and focus on identification that leads to positive ministry;
d. Agree With Your Adversary: I know that this does not make sense, but believe me, it works. For example, if people who are being drawn into strife and conflict on the highway that leads to road rage would employ this posture, many potentially volatile situations would never be created.
People are not my problem therefore I do not live life defensively nor greet people with a defensive posture and mindset, even if their appearance may suggest that they could become a problem to me.
When I engage someone in dialog and feel that they could be adversarial to me and my views on life, God, politics, etc., I determine not to be drawn into strife or conflict – that immediately puts me on the defensive. It may appear that I am appeasing or compromising to not engage someone who is being aggressive in their views, but I hold my mental, spiritual, emotional and physical energies in reserve for the challenges of life that move me, my loved ones or life forward and upward. I will not waste my energies on striving with anyone whose heart and mind are not open, rational and reasonable – it’s a dead-end trap. For me, there is not much that can be worse than the unexpected trap that is set to draw us away from positive things into high energy, emotional striving that clouds the mind and breaks our focus on the calling God has placed on our life and renders us immobile and ineffective for a good amount of time.
The tactic works like this. The enemy (spiritual warfare) sends in distortion, static and interference, just as has been done in the military during times of war (remember ‘The Windtalkers’). When the lines of communication are interrupted (whether its in a family, classroom, place of employment or a nation), the necessary dialog and essentials are circumvented, the necessary resources are cut off and defeat and dissentigration are inevitable. Who is to blame? Not the person on the other end (in this illustration), but we are, individually, for falling into a trap of rankor , conflict and striving that carries no benefit to us whatsoever, but benefits our enemies.
e. Utilize The Keys of The Kingdom: It may sound as though I do not believe in taking a stand. I do believe in taking a stand – a strategic, pre-meditated offensive stand that is at a higher level of competency and value utilizing the tools and posture of the Kingdom of God – not utilizing divisive forms of religion and politics. In short, the tide of debate, anger and all of the emotional turmoil our nation is feeling will not incite me to react, but the Scriptures and the laws of the Kingdom of God give me directives that enable me to respond with confidence, redemption and Godly justice.
Right now no one is winning. We are becoming more and more embroiled and exhausted as we see all of Washington’s ugliness and inabiltiy. Washington is sending out such a divisive and polarizing ideal to our nation that they are helping to tear our nation’s soul apart. They are willing to sacrifice the baby (see Solomon’s wisdom for the 2 mothers debating rights to the baby) and tear it apart rather than to concede for the greater good of the nation. They do not want to defeat the other side, they want to annhilate the other side and it’s members. What comes after that is pure carnage.
So, we cannot look to them to salve or heal our national soul. But, you can! You have the ability to be an angent of healing, even though you are hurting.
Sources of Discontent and of Healing
First of all, God is impartially benevolent and gracious. When Scrpture says that He makes it to rain on the just and on the unjust, we have to remember that that is a benevolent thing and not a malevolent thing. In other words, Father God is good, gracious and kind to all – whether they know and serve Him or not. All of life and all of the good we receive comes from Him. And, America has forgotten to say a hearty ‘thank you’ and has consequently become spoiled and cannot identify when ‘enough’ is ‘enough.’ I propose that if we cannot be satisfied and contented in our souls with our multi-layered levels of blessings and benefits, then we will never be satisfied and it is that dissatisfaction and lack of gratitude that drives the debates and discontent today.
Second, it is the ‘I want mine’ that is the voice of discontent. Put the purveyors of discontent out of work! The cup is not half empty, it is half full! The grand marshalls of discontent are scared to death that we will turn the corner onto Civility Street because they will not longer have the means or reason to keep the discontent and vile hatred and strife stirred up.
We have come a long way! Things are better and getting better. However, the element I am referring to puts each of us in jepoardy by their incessant rehearsal of the very things we are being healed from as if no progress has been made at all. It is exactly like Moses and Israel in the wilderness wondering.
What should have taken a few weeks turned into a forty-year wandering. It was Israel’s discontent and complaining that jeopardized their Canaan Land arrival. Then, the Apostle Paul warns us, recounting the story, and tells us not to do the same and that that story had been preserved to serve as a warning to us to not do the same – complain against God and His leaders.
Third, we must heal the national cannibalism. How? Simply: there is healing in your words! The grand marshalls of discontent are contaminating the fountain that we are all drinking from and it makes the soul of America sick. Scripture tells us that bitter and sweet water cannot flow from the same fountain – blessing and cursing cannot flow from the same fountain.
It is interesting that the Greek word translated ‘sweet water’ is the word glucose. The body needs glucose like an engine needs oil. When the body (physical or national) is starving for glucose (healing, encouraging words propelled by faith in the future and the God of the now and the future) it will have bad nerves, will lose its muscle tone and will begin to canibalize itself. There you go! There’s America right now! From the top down, we are cannibalizing one another! There is not enough glucose flowing into our national body from the ‘feet’ upward. We are nervous, losing our muscle tone (might and resolve) and cannibalizing has begun (a long time ago). And, the biggest cannibals are in Washington and the next are in some of the media.
Start an IV (intravenous feeding) of glucose (healing, encouraging, faith-filled words) in your marriage, family, church, school or place of employment today. Don’t waste a minute in getting it started! People respond to it! They really do!
Give Out of Your Own Need
I have heard the phrase, ‘hurt people hurt people’ and I believe that is true . We grimace and cringe from words, interruptions, unkindness, etc. and most naturally respond in kind. However, the best way to begin healing in your own life is to give out of your own need.
Scripture says that a soft word turns away wrath – it really does. The Scripture also says that blessed are the makers and the maintainers of peace – they are the children of God!
Just recently we went into a very high-stressed office in downtown Chicago. The large room was packed; people were milling about others engaged in deep coversation, etc. When we stepped up to the counter, an attendant greeted us who had welcomed a multitude before us – a grumbling and exhausted multitude. I don’t remember what I first said to her, but it was something conciliatory and lighthearted. As we were conducting our business, my wife said something about having missed lunch and the attendant reached into her bag and pulled out some energy bars and gave them to us. That kind of situation occurs for us all of the time because we have determined to give God’s grace even if it means that we have to give it out of our own need.
A friend of mine made mention of a business the other day and told me how cold and indifferent this establishment was. I quickly let my friend know that I found it to be one of the warmest and friendliest places I visit. I let my friend know that you reap what you sow. Unfortunately, my friend is caught up in self and dispenses his own anger and displeasure wherever he goes rather than dispensing glucose, words that bring healing.
If It’s to Be, It’s up to Me
Begin bringing healing to your Nation, neighborhood, family and self by utilizing these principles. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Faith will transform your future miraculously. Don’t curse your future, your family or your nation. Declare God’s Word and what The Sovereign says about our condition. Inject that ‘glucose’ every chance you get. If this was a national resolve, the Nation would calm down into a quiet confidence; we would begin to think more clearly and strategically, we would be strengthened from within and find that we are the answer for one another.
Bishop Freddie Steel, Sr. Pastor – Life Church of Chicagoland – www.lifeinchicago.org – revfts.usa.net – © Freddie Steel