The Stage Is Set

It is very easy nowadays to get discouraged over all that's happening in our nation, and even the world. Never before in my lifetime (and that's quite a few years) have I seen as much division in our land as today. Politics has infiltrated every area of American life. Everything is about political correctness. I've always wondered, who decides what is politically correct or incorrect? It's always changing and it's always dividing!

There was a time when America's pastimes were physical realms to which we could escape, at least for a season, simply to get our minds off the hardness of the real world we live in. The sports realm for example, has become another platform from which average American folk are targeted with political agenda. Likewise, Hollywood has moved from the entertainment realm to being a giant political propaganda machine. Hollywood has its own political agenda, and those actors who disagree with this agenda are black-balled and black-listed, having their careers destroyed forever!

And then there is the mainstream news media. I remember when news was the news, and journalism was professional and honorable. If it was happening, anywhere in the world, that's what you heard or saw on the news. Unfortunately, the mainstream news media has also become a political propaganda machine. It no longer reports what's happening. Instead, they report what they want you to hear, the way they want you to hear it. Sadly, most people believe what they hear. The mainstream news media has a political agenda. They hurl forth lies and twist the truth in a focused effort to get you and me to buy into it! It's a form of control and manipulation to bring their political agenda into force and again, it's all based on lies.

There is not a lot to be excited about in our world today, unless you are a follower of Jesus Christ with an ear to the ground! Am I crazy? Maybe, but only to those who do not or cannot see the signs of the times. I believe we are on the verge of the greatest revival of all times.

The great revivals and awakenings of the past were born out of the toughest of times; times which seemed to offer no hope at all. But in the midst of those hard times, the Spirit of God stirred the hearts of certain people to an unavoidable restlessness. The restlessness was over the weak condition of the church, and the degradation of a nation. It burdened them to stand in the gap for cities and nations. As they prayed, the burden intensified and eventually the fire of God fell on people! Fresh fire! It spread just like a natural wildfire.

Because the Bible says "In the last days difficult times will come", many Christians have become passive, assuming it is too late to make a stand in prayer. (See 2 Timothy 3:1) There's no doubt difficult and perilous times have come, and they will only get worse. But listen to what Paul tells Timothy later in the same chapter. "All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work." The only reason God would see to it that we are adequately prepared for every good work is because also in the last days, we will see the greatest outpouring ever!

Let me ask you a few questions. Are you annoyed over some of the events of our day? Have you noticed how far we've fallen as a nation, provided you've lived long enough to see it? Have you noticed how powerless the church is as a whole? Do you feel like the darkness is overtaking the light of the Gospel? Can you see how politics, legislation, and protest are not making the world a better place? Instead the world (and the church) is being divided, right down the middle. Here is the answer: Only through an outpouring of the Holy Spirit can Jesus change things. Again, every great outpouring of the past was born out of prayer, from the midst of what looked like hopelessness. But it wasn't! Men and women were stirred to pray until the fire came.

Let me say to you follower of Jesus, the current time, as bad as it may seem, is NOT the time to back down. It is NOT the time to be passive. NOW is the time to pray and intercede for an outpouring! Another thing, follower of Jesus: If you're not yet stirred, stay seated and be passive. But if you are stirred, stand up and pray! Pray until the fire falls. Don't just pray for Uncle Do-drop's Rheumatism. Pray for hearts to change as God moves by His Spirit. Pray for your enemies. Pray for those in authority, even if you don't agree with them politically.

And finally, understand that prayer alone won't change things. But fervent, prevailing prayer will cause the fire to fall and consume the masses with God's irresistible love. That my friend, is what will change nations! Even now, the stage is set for the greatest outpouring ever!

God Is For You!

"If God is for us, then who is against us?" Paul may grammatically be asking a question in Romans 8:31, but the truth is, he is actually making a very strong, factual statement. "God IS for us, so no one can be against us!" Here's another way to say it: "God is for us, so nothing else matters!" When you get this deep down in your spirit, something happens. You begin to understand just how significant you are to Him! And, my friend, nothing will ever change that!

During one of my visits to India I remember taking a taxi to the airport one evening to fly back to the States. We were traveling through the city of Hyderabad, making our way to the airport. The streets of the city were extremely crowded with people. This is the norm for the cities of India. Not only were there many people, but the streets were crowded with all sorts of vehicles such as bicycles, auto-rickshaws, motorcycles, buses, cars, tractors, and man-powered rickshaws.

At one point traffic came to a stand-still. As we were waiting for the traffic to begin moving again, I happened to glance over to the left side of the street and see a little elderly lady sitting on the curb. She looked frail and at the same time hardened. She was an untouchable. By cultural standards, she had absolutely no significance in society. She obviously was homeless, and about to settle down on the street for the night.

I thought to myself, "If this little lady died on the streets tonight in this vast city, no one would even know it - no one!" Immediately the Holy Spirit spoke to me, "I would!" He showed me that this poor, frail, untouchable lady was as significant to Him as any human being that has ever lived. He showed me that before she was even conceived, He had a plan for her. If she had been the only human on earth, Jesus still would have come and died for her. Listen carefully, you are just as significant! How do I know this? Because the Bible declares that God is for you! God is NOT against you. People can be against you. The world can be against you. Even circumstances can be formed against you. But if God is for you (and He is), nothing else matters.

According to Romans 8:29-30 your ARE foreknown and predestined to become conformed to the image of His very own Son, Jesus Christ! As He is...so are you in this world! (See 1 John 4:17) Romans 8:29-30 goes on to say that not only are you predestined, you are called, justified, and glorified!

He loves you with an everlasting love, even when you don't know it. And the greatest thing that could happen to you, me, or any of us is discovering that love. Because God loves you so much, nothing else matters! Not what they say. Not what people do. Not whether or not they receive you or accept you. His love is first and foremost all that matters. When you receive His love, then, and only then can you love others, even when they don't love you!

What are you facing at this moment in your life? What is moving against you? It is not nearly as significant as you think. Why? Because God is for you, not against you! Right now start dwelling on who and what God is in your life. He is Savior, the God of all creation, and, He is for you, not against you! If He is for you (and again, He is), then nothing else is significant. Nothing else matters! That's the truth.