I was part of the “Jesus Movement” that took place in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Most of those involved were hippies who were looking for spiritual answers in a material world. As an ultra-conservative young married who never even once experimented with drugs or Eastern philosophies, I was part of the very small minority of those non-hippie young people who were also looking for real answers to life’s real problems.
During the forty plus years that have passed since I first witnessed hundreds of people standing in churches singing choruses with their hands raised, I have seen many changes in the Evangelical Christian community. However, some things never change, and it is one of those constants that I want to discuss this week.
Every few years our country is put in jeopardy of not surviving as a free nation. Communism and Socialism seem always to be assaulting the gates, prepared to destroy Christianity, liberty, and justice in the United States of America. Since 2008 we have seen a tremendous escalation in anti-Christian, anti-American attacks, and, sadly, most of them come from our own government officials. As a result, we are once again faced with the dilemma of what we as ordinary citizens can do to win back our country.
Since 1960 every time we have found ourselves in a similar situation the go-to solution that has been embraced by the majority of Christians is found in 2 Chronicles 7:14: If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
A few weeks prior to the 2008 election the people in my church met to pray for the nation and the up-coming election. There appeared to be a consensus among those who attended that, perhaps, it was already too late; perhaps, there were not enough Christians, or at least not enough Christians who cared whether the United States would continue as a free nation; perhaps, because of America’s sins, God’s help was no longer an option. These were people of faith, but they were disheartened and discouraged, and they were finding it difficult to believe God’s promises.
I am glad that we serve a God who says of himself, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9) The first thing we need to remember is that God does not need us; we need Him! He never depends on our having big enough numbers or good enough weapons. When he spoke to Solomon at the dedication of the temple he said, if my people, which are called by my name –that is you and me, and I believe that if it were only you and me, that would be enough. God did not say, “if enough people which are called by my name”. He said that if His people, the Christians, will pray and seek Him and turn from sin He will (not maybe—will) hear from heaven and forgive our sins and heal our land. What a promise!
During the past few months as I have prayed and fasted, I have become more and more aware of the sins of this nation. We Christians have stood against evil, but we have not stood against it nearly to the extent that we should have. We have not prayed for our nation nearly as fervently as we should have. We have fallen short. So what do we do?
First, we must get serious about prayer. We need to clean our own houses. The Bible says that our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. We need to start acting as if we believe that. Admit that we as individuals have fallen short of God’s perfect will for us, and ask for His forgiveness.
Second, we must turn from our wicked ways. We must become zealous about getting the sin out of our own lives. We must examine ourselves honestly and openly and confess our sins to God and ask for both forgiveness and deliverance. He will help us overcome all those things that are currently overcoming us. He will help us break free from the bondage in which sin holds us.
Third, we must pray for our nation. Pray for men and women of God who will lead this country into righteousness. Pray for men and women who will be obedient and do the things that God has put them there to do. Pray that God will send us leaders like Daniel who will make no mistakes because they are continually seeking Him and being led by Him.
Fourth, we must stop believing that we know more than God does about who can lead this country at this time. Most of us have spent a LOT of time praying for the right candidate to run against the current president. God has given us a man who has stood up to the most stringent examination from those opposing him and has emerged unscathed. We need to get behind him and tell others to support him.
Finally, we must vote. That is both our duty and our privilege as Americans. We have allowed godless men and women to rule this land for far too long. On November 6 we will have an opportunity to clean house—to clean three houses, the Senate, the House of Representatives, and the White House. We need to make sure that we do so. Staying home is not an option. We do not have to agree with a candidate’s theology to appreciate that he is a man of good character who supports Israel and agrees with us on many core issues.
We are currently in a battle for the future of Christianity in the United States of America. We have sinned and fallen short, but God has told us exactly what we need to do to turn things around so that our land can be healed. Healed—not put on life supports—healed!
We are engaged in what may prove to be the most important battle of our lives, and we must win it. God has given us everything we need to ensure victory, but if we are to be victorious, we must fight this battle on our knees.
Read Joyce's new novel, The Chosen, Free on Kindle October 3rd through October 8th.
Joyce Swann is a nationally-known author and speaker. Her own story of teaching her ten children from the first grade through master’s degrees before their seventeenth birthdays is retold in her book, Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother Her newest novel, The Chosen, is available on Kindle and will be available in paperback October 1. For more information visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net/ or like her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/frontier2000mediagroup