By the time I got home, I was so agitated that I could hardly go to sleep.
Last week I went to visit my dad in the hospital which is three hours away, and during the six total hours spent in the car driving to and from the hospital, I made the mistake of tuning into CNN, HLN and FOX news on XM Radio. I obviously should have kept my dial on KLove like I usually do, because my heart would have been infused with joy instead of irritation and frustration.
I listened to a debate on HLN about Candace Cameron Bure’s proud admission to being a submissive wife, which included a few irate and loud women berating men and the biblical view of marriage. I listened to Governor Christie’s lengthy press conference about the Washington Bridge scandal, and then all the debates and opinions that followed, many of which didn’t even line up with the facts. And, how an Oklahoma group wants a statue of Satan erected at the State House.
I listened to advocates try to convince people why legalizing marijuana was a good thing, while tossing out the truths that it’s addictive, dangerous for children, and overall a bad idea, and disputing that since the legalization in Colorado, there has been a spike in crime and drug overdoses. I listened to people debate over the value of life – not only when life begins, but also when life actually ends based on brain wave activity – and if we have the right to end life. I listened to stories of negligent and abusive parents who taught their toddlers to curse and some who allowed inappropriate pictures to be taken with their teens. All the while, my blood pressure was rising.
It was an overdose of bad news, but I couldn’t turn it off because each time I thought I couldn’t be any more appalled….. I would be. My head began to spin with emotions and thoughts, but the strongest emotion that kept pressing to the surface – was sadness. We live in a world gone terribly wrong.
That’s not a new revelation, yet I think I tend to stay in my own little bubble most of the time and ignore how much evil and sin abounds.
I surround myself with family and friends who love me, hang out with friends who typically share my beliefs, and most events and social outings I attend are Christian based. My radio stations are usually tuned into my local Christian, and sometimes top 40. And can I be honest? I like it that way.
I don’t really want to know all the bad news all the time. I get sick to my stomach when I hear of stories of sexual abuse of children and women. I get angry when I hear of continued political corruption and coverups, topped with an abundant lack of honesty and integrity that seems to taint our government every day. And I get frustrated with the reality that things seem to keep getting worse and worse, instead of better. In fact, at times it seems that the voices and desires of those who are against God’s ways seem to be incredibly louder than those who love Him and promote what’s biblically right.
As I drove down the interstate with my mind full of this mental clutter and my heart full of growing irritation, my spirit began to feel heavy. I began to wonder what God’s answer might be if I had the opportunity to ask Him, “God, what in the world is going on in this world? And when are You going to take action?”
So when I arrived back home, I began looking through scripture and came across a few verses that although they did not answer my question to God exactly, did help in settling my heart (and my nerves).
Proverbs 21:2 says “People may be right in their own eyes, but the Lord examines their heart.” I need not waste time fretting about all that is going on in this world, because all I really need to worry about is my own heart. If my heart is right with God, I can have peace knowing that God will take care of the rest. Even when every ounce of news seems to be filled with unrighteousness and sin, He is still on the throne, and one day, all hearts will be exposed.
Ephesians 6:13 says, “Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm.” This verse reminded me that this world IS in a battle between good and evil and regardless of who appears to be winning, we are called as believers to put on the armor of God. To fill our hearts with His Word and stay connected through prayer because in Him, we can stand strong knowing that He will have victory in the end – even when it appears to the human eye that God is losing the battle.
Lastly, 2 Corinthians 2:14 says, “But thank God! He has made us his captives and continues to lead us along in Christ’s triumphal procession. Now he uses us to spread the knowledge of Christ everywhere, like a sweet perfume.” This one stung a little bit. I might like it my safe little bubble, surrounded by like-minded people, but that’s not where God calls me to stay. We are all called to spread the gospel message and stand firm in His truths. Even when we feel like our voices don’t matter and that this world is too far gone for us to make a difference, through His power, even the tiniest voices can be heard. And sometimes the quietest voices can change hearts for eternity.
What a comfort to be reminded that even though it seems like this whole world has gone crazy and that God is being universally pushed farther and farther away from sight, that Jesus will one day return and claim authority over this world once again, while collecting all those who believe in Him into His arms.
Until that time, I am choosing to fill my eyes, heart and mind with more of Him and His Word, and less of the media and this world. I am choosing to continue standing firm in His truths, even when the world tries to justify that what is wrong, is actually right. I am choosing to use my voice for Jesus, no matter how often it gets drowned out in the crowd, because in Him, all things are possible.
What about you? What might you choose for this new year that will help you stand firm in God’s truths?
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