Wednesday, November 2, 2016
Examine yourselves to see if your faith is genuine. Test yourselves. Surely you know that Jesus Christ is among you; if not, you have failed the test of genuine faith. 2 Corinthians 13:5(NLT)
Most parents have had to deal with “monsters” in the closet. As a parent of pre-school children I had to dispatch a number of the critters. But how do you teach a concept of a fearful mind to children that young?
I read of a minister who dealt with the subject in a children’s time at church. The children were all gathered around and the minister held up a paper bag and proclaimed to the children, I caught him; I finally got that monster in the closet. Do you all want to see? Every child was nervously eager to see, and, one-by-one she let them look inside, and what each one silently saw was his or her own reflection in a mirror.
Sometimes the best teacher is silence, a simple face-to-face encounter with our fears, and an honest evaluation of what part we must claim as our own for creating the mess with which we live.
There has been much said (myself included) about the present miserable state of American politics, lamenting over how in the world we ever got down to choosing between two candidates who are (arguably) the least likely to win the title of Miss Congeniality in this pageant we call a presidential campaign. If we had time, I’d like to sit down with each citizen of our country and invite a peek in the mirror bag.
At the risk of appearing like just another know-it-all-windbag, the problem with American politics is not the two candidates that make us want to hold our nose when we get in the voting booth, rather it is decades of voters choosing leaders who promise prosperity and an easier life, when we should be choosing leaders of exemplary character and integrity.
When we choose empty promises over a moral backbone we tend to reinforce the idea that what we really want in a leader is empty promises. And we always wind up living with those choices in which we place our faith!
So, what’s the fix? How do we change?
It will not be easy, nor will it be quick, but the only way to change is to deal with the monster in the bag. God gives each of us faith to follow His Word and the pathway of righteousness. We must begin choosing in public life leaders who will be role models of making ethical and morally consistent decisions for the next generation.
A mirror can only reflect what stands before it, and is no use unless the beholder acts on what he sees, so faith is of no consequence without action.
But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. James 1:22-24(NLT)