Sunday, October 18, 2009

What's Going Wrong?

As advanced as technology has become,
as intellectual as many people have become,
as aware of the world as many of us are. . .
Yet the world is in terrible shape right now.

We must ask, What is happening? Why in the world is all this happening? What in the world can I do about it?

I must have answers for myself, for my own sanity and survival. And I care about my family and friends. To some degree, I care about strangers, people all around the world.

So, here’s the start of a list of “what is happening.”

Severe weather
Worldwide economic downturn
Powerful assault of germs, disease, epidemics, new forms of biological dangers
Extreme political upheavals around the globe
Rising power of Islam preaching jihad
Increasing nuclear development in many nations
Politicians around the world, maligning their opposition in order to hide their corruption
“Hate crime” legislation running wild
Disruptive public protests with increasing lawlessness
Health care deceit mounting, truthfulness hard to ascertain
Looming, huge shortages of food
Manipulation of genes in seeds, unsafe food handling, e.coli, etc.
Greed rampant among politicians, financial heads of large corporations and big agencies
Intrusive, additional census information to be demanded, with harsh penalties for non-compliance
Military threats and defiance of political dictates
Wide-reaching evidences of slanted news reporting
Pushing the limits of morality in books, movies, TV programs, personal lives of celebrities
Fractured churches and denominations. Ego? Errors? Other agendas?
Intense regional financial issues: bankruptcy of states, mishandling of money
Mistrust and misbehavior of elected leaders
(No doubt, more could be listed. . . )

As the world staggers from crisis to crisis it’s plainly evident,“Something’s going wrong!” You and I must then honestly conclude, “I must respond to these troubles. They are already affecting me, and if any of these gets worse then the devastation will certainly touch me and my family with terrible results.”

Three different ways to respond.
Someone says, “No, none of this is actually happening. And besides I can’t allow myself to get upset. I choose to be happy!”

Another approach could be, “I need more solid information. What does the Bible say? How does this fit in to the books of Daniel and Revelation? Did Jesus mention any of this specifically? There are people who are going to make money out of this, and how reputable are they? Until I find answers to every doubt I have I will not make one move to secure myself and my family from any of these possible disaster scenarios.”

The remaining response might be something like, “Yes, that list reports the truth. It calls for me to jump into a survival mode and prepare myself for hard times because I choose to be wise and prudent.”

This takes wisdom to consider.  Pray. Ask for God's wisdom and directions.  Ask Him to show you His priorities for your own life and for your family.

Hard times come in all shapes and sizes. The Bible does warn of terrible troubles, judgment, and tribulation. We just don’t know when the worst will come. Perhaps not for a long time?

Ask for His strength to enable you to get moving in the right direction.  You want to hear the Lord tell you, "Well done, good and faithful ________________. "  (put your name in here)!
In the Bible a few examples of obedience to God in hard times include:

Noah, built the ark amidst unbelievers and sinners, saved his family & animals, Genesis 6.

Joseph, organized and laid up for 7 years for the coming 7 years of famine, Genesis 41.

Nehemiah, led the rebuilding of the wall of Jerusalem, armed with weapons, Nehemiah 4.

Esther, risked her life to save her people in a foreign land, Esther 4.

David, headed 37 “mighty men” who led armies to fight the enemies of the kingdom, 2 Samuel 23.

Ruth, a poor widow, a foreigner, worked in the fields in obedience, Ruth 2.

Why do hard times come?
Our spiritual enemy, Satan, wants us to live in defiance of God. The Lord allows us to be tested so we will realize our own weaknesses and sins, and turn to Him in repentance, asking for His forgiveness, and learning to depend upon Him for real happiness. God wants us to grow in faith.

Of course, you will check out the credentials of people who give you advice. Be careful when reading Internet sites, comments and forums, books, magazines, and listening to news shows.

Don’t get that “snowed-under” syndrome. Eat it like you eat an elephant, one bite at a time. Of course, you can’t do everything at once. Make 3 lists: Today, Tomorrow, This Week. Get started and keep track of where you are. Yes, you’ll come up with other things to add to those lists. Your hard-working brain is using both sides to respond.

What’s happening not a “walk in the park” or a “pizza-induced dream.” Life is happening, and you are part of it.

Go from HARDSHIP to HELP and HOPE!

Remember that old song, “Trust and Obey”? You can do both. And others may be helped, blessed, and inspired by your example.

by Elaine Hardt @2009