The following article is by Dr. Kirk Elliot CEO if J2911 Holdings and is an excerpt from our Parenting on Purpose eBook.
There is a war happening in the spiritual world, and it is manifesting in today’s politics, economy, natural disasters, terrorism, sickness and disease and more. I bet you can feel it. We have an entire culture of overreach and abuse by the government—executive orders and legislation are stripping us of our freedoms. Threats of terrorist attacks on our nation don’t compare to the threat of our being destroyed from within. The moral decay in our nation has caused the conspicuous consumption that has made us slaves to our creditors, and created culture of death all around us. People are sick and dying because of financial stress, because of the food they eat, and because they are living life in a way that pleases man and not God. Politically, geopolitically, economically, morally, socially, and spiritually we have come unglued.
This decay has desensitized us as a nation to the point of calling evil things good and good things evil. I bet you can come up with dozens of examples where this is the case. But truth is not relative—truth is absolute! In our politically correct, godless, morally relative society, speaking truth has not only been frowned upon, but made illegal in many circumstances.
The great news is that we know how to win a spiritual battle. We pray and fast. But we also raise our voices and take a stand for truth. In doing this, we must remember our Source. For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of love and a sound mind (see 2 Timothy 1:7). Perfect love casts out all fear (see 1 John 4:18).
The Courage to Speak
The life of Queen Esther is one of the greatest stories of courage in the Bible. If you remember, Esther, a Jewish orphan living in exile in Persia, was raised by her cousin, Mordecai. Through a series of events, King Xerxes chose Esther to be his queen. Then Haman, the king’s right-hand man, tricked the king into signing a law that would sentence all Jews to death. Mordecai sent a message to Esther urging her to go before the king and ask for mercy for her people:
“If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14)
The law stated that anyone who came into Xerxes’ presence without being asked could be killed—even Esther! But she conquered her fear, put her life on the line, entered the king’s chamber, and made her request to the king to have the horrible law changed.
When Esther came before with the king, she knew she was facing two possible outcomes. Either she would find favor with the king and her request be granted, or she would be killed for even making such a request. The consequences were severe, but the act of one brave woman saved the lives of an entire nation.
As families, we need to be talking about areas where we can rise up like Esther, be courageous, defend the defenseless, and stand up for truth. The world needs heroes.
Will you be one of them? Will your kids be? This generation and future generations will be impacted by what we do now. Now is the time to let our light shine! You were born for such a time as this.
Martin Luther King, Jr. did this in his fight for human rights. Patrick Henry took a stand when he rallied the masses to fight for freedom during the Revolutionary War wand boldly declared, “Give me liberty or give me death.” Harriet Tubman put her life on the line to lead enslaved people to freedom along the underground railroad. Oskar Schindler, a German industrialist, put his family fortune on the line and was credited with saving over 1,200 Jews during the Holocaust.
Like these heroes, and like Esther, we need to speak out, make our voices heard, and change the course of history so future generations will still have a country to call home. We may not be popular. We may even be putting our security and comfort levels at risk. But consider the flip side. What if we don’t act? What if we don’t follow the simple gospel of Jesus and the command to “love your neighbor”? What if we don’t share the good news and let our light shine in this dark world? Then we have a silent world that is ravaged by fear because the only ones speaking are spreading a crippling anti-gospel of despair, destruction, fear and death.
The Cost of Silence
I recently read a book by Andy Andrews called How Do You Kill 11 Million People? Quite possibly it was one of the most important books I’ve ever read. In this book, a horrific description of life during the Holocaust was recounted from testimony during the Nuremburg trials. During this testimony, a story unfolded about a church on the railroad tracks in Germany during the reign of Hitler. The people of this church heard stories of the Jews and how they were being exterminated, but chose not to believe them because it was just too unbelievable. Then, one Sunday morning as they were in church worshipping, they heard the train coming. This time, they heard people screaming—Jews screaming on the way to their deaths. What did the church do? They started to sing their hymns louder so they could drown out the cries and the screams of the people being taken to their death.
Is it wrong to be in church? No, of course not.
Is it wrong to worship God and worship Him loudly? Of course it isn’t.
Is it wrong to be in church and to worship God so loudly just to drown out the screams of people being brought to their death? Yes!
This is where there is a problem. What could that church have done differently? I don’t know, but anything would have been better than nothing. They chose to protect their comfort rather than respond to the pain of those being exterminated. This is wrong.
Sometimes it hurts to do the right thing. In fact, it’s generally easy to do the wrong thing, because it feels good. Imagine how different our world would be if we would rise up and be heroes in other people’s lives. Speak out for those who cannot defend themselves. Love your neighbor as yourself, and at a minimum—just be friendly!
We have a chance to be world changers and history makers—and to raise them. Here’s a simple assignment to do with your family. Think of the people you know who you feel like you could defend. Are there friends, family members, or even entire groups of disadvantaged people that need help? Write them down. Then, think about what you could do. These dinner-table conversations could be deep, thought-provoking, and ultimately action-provoking.
Here is a challenge: You might be the only Jesus your neighbor ever sees. Maybe you are living in your house for this reason. Reach out to their neighbor. Ask if you can pray for them. I bet they are hurting. I bet they have something that is troubling them. As followers of Jesus, we have the answer! We have hope. We have a peace that surpasses all understanding, an unquenchable fire burning inside us, and a light radiating from us that can cast out the darkness.
P.S. If you haven’t downloaded the eBook you can download it for free here.