We live in terrifying times. What kind of world are we leaving to our children?
It’s made even scarier because of the at-our-fingertips information we can get today. When women kept their homes on the frontier, they might be frightened of the threat of Indian attacks or a wolf after their livestock, but news of that was sporadic.
Today, not only are we kept abreast of the scary things in our neighborhoods, but we hear of genocidal generals in Africa, mass murder in Norway, and brutality toward Christians in the Middle East.
We hear about our country’s enemies all around the world and what they might do tomorrow. This news comes to us by way of sensationalist reporters.
If you’re the type to listen to conspiracy theorists, you may think that it looks pretty certain that we are doomed.
In addition, we are bombarded day and night with inflammatory, mean-spirited political news and commentary, with each side demonizing the other. If we listen to either side, soon we are convinced that whoever doesn’t believe as we do are bloodthirsty goons who wish for our personal destruction and the destruction of our nation.
There is no end to the frightening news we can get if we want to.
It’s easy to adopt a bunker mentality and decide to hunker down and protect our families from all the scary stuff that’s out there or that might be coming.
Some families do this by political and social action. They believe that our hope lies in the change that comes with activism.
A few respond to this fear by going to radical extremes. They stockpile food and weapons with the notion that they can somehow set themselves up to survive an apocalyptic eventuality.
Some just feel helpless but just worry all the time.
However you cut it, this kind of fear is a failure to trust God.
We must look to what he says.
He has determined the times and places we will live. (Acts 17:26)
Like Queen Esther, we and our children were born for such a time as this.
The hearts of national leaders are in God’s hand. He turns them whichever way he wants. (Prov. 21:1)
We aren’t to put our trust in political leaders. (Psalm 146:3)
We are to pray for our leaders. The way to live a quiet, dignified life is to pray for government authorities. (I Timothy 2:1-2)
Our hope is in Jesus and his Gospel, not in politics. (Jesus had an interesting way of living in a scary culture.)
It’s my personal belief that the good we can do by activism is negligible in the grand scheme of things. (The Right has been fighting the culture war for over 30 years now—and losing profoundly.)
hat’s not to say that God might not call us to political or social action. However, we must realize that in the face of the monumental problems—real problems—what we can do humanly is very limited. It’s easy to become discouraged and disillusioned by this.
Unless we realize that our hope does not lie in our own efforts.
When people change, nations change.
And in my belief, Jesus makes the best possible kind of changes.
How revolutionary is that?
If we call ourselves Christians, our kingdom is not of this world. We’re citizens of a better, heavenly country. Do we spend as much time and energy building that kingdom as we do promoting our earthly political agendas? Do we look forward with hope to the day when all things will be set right? Or are we obsessed with current events that simply reflect a sin-broken world?
So instead of frantic, fearful, negligible activism, yes–act as God leads–
but mostly pray and reach out with the love of Christ?
Your politically opposite neighbor, your Muslim co-worker, the kid you fear may be the next theater murderer?
Show them Jesus. Love them. Befriend them.
Sometimes we say with resignation, “All we can do is pray.” All we can do? We have the ear of the all-powerful God of the universe and yet we see prayer as our last resort?
All the oppositional activism in the world will not change their hearts. In fact, it might even alienate them.
But loving people unconditionally and praying for them will reach hearts, and it may lead them to Christ.
And when Christ changes people, the world becomes better.
Don’t be pushy, just loving.
This is where real transformation happens—on your street and around the globe.
This post of part of 31 Days of Fearless Mothering
Look for my eBook, Fearless Mothering, in November!