FAITH: Trusting the truth of the Word of God
Published 12:18 am Saturday, June 12, 2021
I spent most of last week in a hospital room in Oklahoma City, OK, near where I grew up, helping take care of my father who had a major surgery on his neck. Driving by myself, I can make it to where my father lives in about eight and a half hours, depending on how many Buc-ees I visit. I have decided Texas 105 is my preferred route to get to I 45 when we head up to the north. This has come after several disappointing experiences trusting my GPS and spending a lot of time driving the winding roads from here to Dallas.
This trip I noticed something I had not paid attention to before. It seemed to me, every body of water I crossed or was able to see was over its banks and flooding nearby wooded areas or pastures. It made me feel the water in this area was slowly rising everywhere I looked and caused my mind to begin to think metaphorically about our modern world and the necessity to be prepared. I assume there are some reading this who continue to struggle with some PTSD caused by the frequent heavy rains, hurricanes, and flooding caused by rising water, but then I wonder if the metaphor will make more sense to those who know this so well.
There is a growing concern and grief I and many like me carry concerning the state of our nation, and the blatant disregard for the Word and truth of God. For several years, the banks of the rivers of cultural tolerance, political correctness, and false equal rights have been slowing overflowing into the American world view while many feel there is very little to do to stop it. With the issue of rising water and flooding risks, there is very little any of us regular people can do to combat the problem, as we are forced to trust elected officials to do right by us and protects our community. I believe this is the consensus of most of us regular people who share a traditional Biblical and conservative world view. There is very little we can do to combat the rising tide of humanism, secularism, and tolerance. We just seem to hope we can trust a few politicians and hope God will do something.
Friends, first, we can do more than hope God will do something. In fact, God is always doing something even when we do not see it or know it. We can never forget God is in control of this world, even if they world and the evil one do not seem to know this truth. Our trust in God is what should encourage us to not accept the rising water as helpless bystanders, but people empowered with truth sow the seed of truth to our children and anyone who we have influence. No one in their right mind would allow their child to bring the water hose into the house, turn it on, and just let it flood the floors. In the same way, we must protect our homes and families from the onslaught of untruth and do something.
Here is what I believe, there is a drastic difference between my race, ethnicity, and quirks about my personality and passions. You can accept me or anyone else no matter the color of their skin, where they come from, and their upbringing. We all must learn to tolerate people who are different from us, like people who put ketchup on scrambled eggs or say pop when referring to carbonated water with syrup. We also must learn to tolerate the parts of people which can cause us offense or pain, knowing we all have our faults, and love people even when it is a struggle. Teaching our children to accept and love people is an absolute must, but we must also teach this regarding the truth of the Word of God.
Just because culture accepts something as ok or normal it previously did not accept as ok or normal, does not mean the Truth of God changes. Many people do not like to hear this today. In fact, many people like the narrative of culture encouraging the rising water of tolerance of sin and acceptance of people’s behaviors, even if different from God’s command for complete obedience. Accepting someone’s skin color or tolerating their quirks are not the same as accepting and tolerating behaviors rebellious towards God’s desire and purpose. We have unfortunately lumped these together so in order to be a good human, we are expected to receive the entire world view in order to love the person.
‘ I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry. ‘ 2 Timothy 4:1-5
You are Valued and Loved! Pastor Brad
Rev. Brad McKenzie is Lead Pastor at Orange First Church of the Nazarene, 3810 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Orange.