This was our invitation to this past week’s Prayer & Fast Wednesday; The most profound events in our lifetime are shaking the ground beneath the reach of our full understanding and awareness. We are suffering the consequences of having made the same mistake as the countless multitudes before us, of putting our trust in man before God. We are standing on the fault line of a major paradigm shift…like the car in the movie thriller teetering on the edge of a cliff. We are the passengers who need to choose which end of the car holds salvation…against the forces pulling us in the fatal direction. Please join us for Prayer & Fast Wednesday tomorrow with prayerful focus on the truth of our rightful government, as found in Isaiah 9:6-7, and the full armor we will put on to defend it, as found in Ephesians 6:10-18.
The Banuchi Challenge coupled with this past week’s P&F Weds Invitation synergize as a call to battle stations on the once mightiest battleship to ever sail the seas, now a vessel dumbstruck by the devil into behaving as if she were the Love Boat…or more aptly, the Nice Boat. Picture yourself in a boat on a river with tangerine trees and marmalade skies. Somebody calls you, you answer quite slowly, a girl with kaleidoscope eyes…Nobody is expecting the call to arms on the ship to nowhere. The captain enjoys a comfortable pension, as the crew surveys the pleasure-seeking passenger roster for romantic opportunities below deck. The passengers of the Diamond Princess, having taken a direct hit, still believe they’ve only caught a virus. Got the picture? What will it take to lift the veil of deception and betrayal? What will it take to restore our God-given sense of the who, how, and why of our world???
The Holy Bible is the most authoritative and trusted explanation of who we are, how we got here, and why. I especially love God’s way of making the very most from the very least…He made the universe from nothing. He who could have easily raised a might army to conquer the Philistines, sent the young boy David, the least of his siblings, instead. And the Creator of the universe who could have conquered Death as a mighty Thor, sent a baby to save the world. And look at what He’s managed with a boy from Queens! Knowing these things our Founders made Subsidiarity, an organizing principle that matters ought to be handled by the smallest, lowest or least centralized competent authority, the primary organizing principle of our new nation. They weren’t mere geniuses…they were moral geniuses.
Not only were the Founders smart enough to see their own present day so clearly, they were gifted with the prescience to thoroughly prepare us for ours. They knew then, as James L. Garlow writes today, “I do not believe that the real separation in America is Right versus Left, but rather right versus wrong. Some principles are right. Some are not. The ones found in the Bible are always right. When followed, they bring great blessings.” And yet…
Garlow begins chapter three of his book Well Versed with a Bible quiz, “How many of the following biblical characters do you recognize? Shammua, Shaphat, Igal, Palti, Gadiel, Gaddi, Ammiel, Sethur, Nahb, Guel. Did you recognize any of those ten names? I doubt you recognized a single one of them. And, yes, they’re all in the Bible. The short answer is because they were wimps. Nobody needs to remember their names. They were the ten spies in Numbers 13:4-5, 7, 9-15 who were cowards. We do, however, remember the other two spies: Joshua and Caleb. Why? Because they were courageous, bold, and ready to charge forward.” He goes on to tell us how the Wesleyan Church was founded in 1843 after a group of Methodist pastors were informed they could not discuss the slave issue in the Methodist Church because it was too divisive. Sound familiar? 177 years later, replace the word slave with the word politics, and voila! The déjà vu irony of the ages…the church that gave consent to slavery by its silence 177 years ago, is fitting its own parishioners for chains by the very same silence today.
I joked the other day about the zombie-like millennials begging for the elimination of their own Bill of Rights, but how are we any better? What are we doing, to use the Banuchi vernacular, to steward our own precious God-given Liberty? Why do the shepherds remain silent as the Love Boat is slowly converted to Slave Ship? Have they stopped believing, or have they bargained for comfort and safety of the passengers…and themselves over the truth of their destination?
Every single day that God blesses us with the ability to breathe the precious air into COVID-19-free lungs, is another day of opportunity to turn OUR ship around…another day to wholeheartedly embrace the Truth of Isaiah 9:6-7…another day to lay my earthly desires aside, to put on the full armor of God. Roosevelt told us the only thing we have to fear is fear itself. He lied. The only thing we truly have to fear is our desire for those things we’ve become attached to. Our earthly desire is a fire created, fueled, fanned, and flamed by the great destroyer. It would consume all that we are, were, and ever will be, were it not for the One who came to save us from the eternal fire. Detachment will free us from the folly of our below-deck-pursuits, to rise above, to re-claim our Ephesians 6:10-18 purpose and answer the shofar’s call, ALL HANDS ON DECK! For the Love of God…
When we are detached from things on the inside the fury of desire burns itself out. ~ Oswald Chambers, Discipline of Divine Loyalty