I had a conversation the other day with a lady who was not happy about how difficult it is for some people to get government assistance to help them with their day-to-day existence. She was also upset that millionaires and billionaires have so much while she has so little. In one candid moment, she revealed the heart of the matter when she said, “They have the lifestyle that I want.” She went on to say that if you are a millionaire or billionaire, you should “do something with it. Don’t show me your yacht, because I get motion sickness, and I would not enjoy it anyway.”
During this same conversation, she let it slip that she has not held a job since she was laid off more than ten years ago. “But I’m not worried about it,” she said. “I’m still waiting. I know that the right job will pop up in front of me one of these days.” I think we just found the problem.
I find it interesting that those who begrudge others enjoying the fruit of their labor (a nice car, big house, boat or other nicety – and feel somehow they are entitled to approve of such niceties), when they themselves come into sudden or new-found monies do not go help others with it but rather make a beeline for the nearest mall and load up on as much “stuff” as they can find. It’s why so many lottery winners end up broke in a very short period of time. They don’t know how to manage what they have, and they resent those who do. Please hear my heart on this. I am not being critical or judgmental. This is simply an observation I have made again and again while doing outreach ministry and volunteer work with this sector of our society.
This mindset starts in childhood. Give two siblings a dollar. Little Johnny will spend a little and save the rest. Little Timmy blows the entire wad immediately on candy, gum or some little trinket. The candy and gum are eaten and chewed and the trinket breaks. This happens week after week until finally Little Johnny has saved up enough to buy himself the latest video game. Suddenly Timmy resents Johnny and feels entitled to have equal access to Johnny’s game. Johnny may decide out of the goodness of his heart to share his game with Timmy, but he doesn’t have to. It’s his game. He saved for it and bought it so he could enjoy it.
As our nation writhes under the most lawless administration in our history, we have become a nation plagued by class warfare, abortion, human trafficking, pornography, homosexuality, homelessness and a host of other social ills that run rampant in a fatherless society. We run around putting Barbie band-aids on gaping, bleeding, infected wounds, pop a little pill and try to forget about the pain. All the while the cancers of socialism and communism are taking over. In the same way that we ignore the symptoms and delay going to the doctor because we are afraid of what the diagnosis might be, we have ignored the societal symptoms that have been screaming at us that there is infection in the body, and we pretend not to notice. We are busy and don’t have time to deal with that right now.
The cure to the social sicknesses that have snuffed the life out of other cultures in the past does not lie in government policies or regulations, more taxes, fewer taxes or any other man-made systems. The cure is in the Word of God. It always has been.
Some who are wealthy are miserable because they thought money would fill the void in their heart.
Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ” (Matthew 4:4)
Some who are poor resent the wealthy and want what they have.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” (Exodus 20:17)
Abortion has kept tens of millions of children from seeing the light of day.
“You shall not murder.” (Exodus 20:13)
Human trafficking uses and abuses countless numbers of young women and children every single day.
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6)
Homosexuality, pornography and other sexual sins hold people in bondage.
“Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:32)
Drugs, alcohol, sex, food, spending and other addictions keep Christians and non-Christians alike in secret prisons.
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you.” (Acts 1:8)
“And if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of His Spirit who lives in you.” (Romans 8:11)
It’s easy to point fingers and call people out for the things they do that are wrong, because it feeds our own carnal desire to be placed above someone else.
“Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.” (Romans 12:3)
Our God-shaped desire for justice and liberty cries out against the individuals who seek to promote injustice and to take away our liberty. But remember:
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12)
So, you see, we have at our fingertips the very cure for every social sickness that plagues our nation. The Word of God is power that heals and truth that sets us free. The question is whether or not we dare to use it – because in order for it to be truly effective, we must apply in internally first. Don’t pick out scriptures that prove your point and throw them at others like grenades in an effort to make them act right. The only thing you accomplish with that is to leave a trail of bodies and broken relationships.
“All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18-19)
Start with your own heart. Line up your own thoughts, words, actions and habits with the Word. Then take a few select passages, place them in your slingshot, swing that thing over your head and nail the enemy between the eyes. A single, well-placed blow to the enemy will do more to further the purposes of God than an entire arsenal of verses strewn about like scattershot at each other.
And after all, isn’t that we are all about? Isn’t that what we are destined to do – to serve the purposes of God in our own generation?
“Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”