Since February 2020, we have experienced fundamental changes that were completely unanticipated, and no one could have predicted. We are in the midst of a revolution, and the outcome, as of today, has not yet been determined. The next 18 to 24 months are going to be pivotal, and the results will shape our children and grandchildren’s lives. I believe the Church will be the difference-maker in the equation. We are heirs to a legacy, and the perpetuation of our nation and the health of the Church is not assured. We must get this right.
As King David asked in Psalm 11:3 [NIV®]: “When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” A solid foundation is essential to the stability of any enterprise, and it’s clear we have some cracks in our foundations. There’s a shaking taking place. I believe God is the Author of that shaking, and His intention is to draw our attention to Him and to His purposes. The goal isn’t to look through the windows of our buildings and point condemning fingers at others. It’s to say to ourselves, and to one another, and to God, “Lord, help us to be different.”
We are not powerless. Throughout the Bible, God’s people are at the center of His purposes—we hold the keys. We don’t need political change, or ideological shifts, or new elected officials, or election reform nearly as much as we need a heart change in the midst of God’s people. God, in His grace and mercy, has begun to initiate a response, a renewal, and a redemption. Just as certainly as He’s gathering the Jewish people to that little strip of land in the Middle East, He is purifying His Church. We need to invite the Spirit of God to continue to purify His people and to enable us to stand.
Though we see many outward expressions of adversity, make no mistake, the battle we face is spiritual in origin. Our circumstances require outcomes beyond ourselves, because the only thing evil will yield to is a power greater than itself. As Romans 12:21 [NIV®] says, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” We’re not going to out-organize, or out-work, or out-think evil. If we’re going to be overcomers, we need to call on Almighty God for His help, and we need to understand His power so we can follow Him in a new way.
We also need to take courage, as we press into the days ahead. Courage is an essential part of our expression of faith, and the Bible makes it clear we will not finish our course without it. Joshua 1:9 [NIV®] says, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Just as God directs Joshua to maintain strength and courage, we need to remember that it’s possible to give them preeminent places in our lives, too.
The opposite of courage isn’t fear—courageous people often do great things while they’re afraid. Instead, I think the antithesis of courage is to be discouraged, or to be without courage. That’s what makes encouragement—offering support, and hope, and truth to someone else—so significant. When the Bible says to encourage one another daily, it’s not just a casual suggestion. It’s a command. There’s a purpose to our lives beyond ourselves, and encouragement is necessary for God’s people to sustain the strength we need for the battle.
On that note, allow me to offer you this encouragement: If you’re walking through a time when you have to overcome, don’t stop. Don’t give in. Don’t compromise. Don’t yield. Keep saying yes to the Lord. You may have been asked to accept a difficult assignment, but we were designed to be overcomers. As Isaiah 61:3 [NIV®] says, I trust God to cause us to, “… become a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor.”
Similarly, if you know someone going through a difficult time, take a moment to offer them a word of encouragement. We need one another, and we need to know we are not alone. The Church can’t afford to be discouraged right now. We must stand together. We’re in a battle, and as we engage in the fight, we need to remember our strength is anchored in the King of kings and the Lord of lords. We cannot lose sight of that, because there’s a revolution afoot. The outcome is going to be determined by us—the people of God—and we need His help.
What are we going to do? Are we going to hurry back to the routines we had before, or will we say to the Spirit of God, “Here I am. I’ll own this space. I will lead. I’ll stand for Your Truth”? One person with God’s perspective can change everything, and the difference-makers will be you and me.
Onward in Him,
Pastor Allen Jackson