Monday, January 11, 2010

The Crossroads

I was listening to a recent piece on NPR which was discussing the tragedy gang warfare has brought upon Mexico, and particularly the border town of Juarez. They have doubled the police force and added subsidized daycare for factory workers' children. Tough steps towards combating crime, loving intentions for families. Near the close of this focus, Clara Rojas points out that this is a cultural degeneration "stemming from deep social fissures". I wonder if she knows from whence this springs? I don't know what her views are of God, but I seriously wonder - where does the world think our woes come from? When you do not acknowledge God and His word, where is the plumb line for "too far" off the mark? What does the mark we aim for even consist of?

Of course, here in the United States and other places not currently known as the "murder capital" of the southern hemisphere, we feel somehow removed from such extreme societal failures. Are we really? Our place on the range of scale might be a little higher up, but come on... how far are we from the plain and simple standards of God? Where are we on the scale of one who "loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined." Titus 1 How carefully do we truly walk in adherence to His word?

My belief is that we are a lukewarm country. We take conception into our own hands. We have legalized murdering babies simply because we can do so without waiting to look into their eyes. We pay others by choice to raise our children so that we can have more "stuff" and hope that they will do our job for us. We do not pay our debts. We overspend beyond our plenty. We blame others for our own decisions and their fallout. We plead 'not guilty' to everything. We brag about our 'good deeds' and 'passing it on'. We are our own gods. "Like the blind we grope along the wall, feeling our way like men without eyes. At midday we stumble as if it were twilight; among the strong, we are like the dead." Isaiah 59:10 This is the state of our Union, and it grieves me to see it.

And the sad thing I hate to admit, is that I am fearful to even open my mouth about this. I'm afraid of offending somebody by mentioning these things. Even fellow brothers and sisters in the body of Christ will feel slighted by my inferring that a choice they have made might be sinful. But we, as a country, have become like the proverbial frog being slowly boiled to it's death. We do not see it, we do not feel it.

In Deuteronomy 13, we read, "If a prophet, or one who foretells by dreams, appears among you and announces to you a miraculous sign or wonder, and if the sign or wonder of which he has spoken takes place, and he says, "Let us follow other gods" (gods you have not known) "and let us worship them," you must not listen to the words of that prophet or dreamer. The LORD your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul. It is the LORD your God you must follow, and him you must revere. Keep his commands and obey him; serve him and hold fast to him."

Are we even at the crossroads as of today? Or are we further along than that, already down a path that leads to no good thing? I'm not exactly sure. This question occupies my thoughts. But one thing is certain for those who claim to love and live for Jesus, our Savior, we need to stop. We need to look around. We need to fall on our faces and ask for directions from the One who longs to tell us where to go (so to speak) and how to get there. And then we need to get up and walk.

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