King of the World

When I watch the news, especially in the last six months, I get the feeling all the journalists are Chicken Little, screaming, "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!"
My patience wears thin at the name-calling, back-biting, mud-slinging garbage...those who do not live in NC or the Charlotte-metro area might not be privy to the Kay Hagin/Elizabeth Dole ads. It's gettin' hot in herrrrre. I think there's an actual lawsuit involved. It's that bad.
I have been relatively dispassionate about this political season. Mostly because I do not believe that politicians hold the answers to my life or to the life of our country. I am not apathetic about the direction of our country...I will vote...I have beliefs about government's role in our lives, etc. However, I do not put my hope and trust in America, in its people, in its elected leaders.

Our sermon at church got fiery this morning. But not like you might think. Most people hear that and think that the preacher preached against sinners and talked about how they are all going to rot in the pit of hot, hot Hell. It's tragic that that's how we're perceived...we Christians. Jonathan got lathered up about what we can and should DO versus what we're not supposed to be doing. He ignited a passion in us to LOVE our enemies, rather than curse them ('cause that IS in the Bible, y'all.). He told us that SHOWING unbelievers a true love and compassion would lead them to the cross. And the cross leads to peace. We get sentimental about how "Jesus died on the cross for me." But we don't complete the sentence... "Jesus died on the cross for me...to love people, make disciples, go into the world and share the Good News, feed the poor, and be his vessel for peace and reconciliation."

Colossians 1:15-20 speaks of Jesus as our hope, our peace, our salvation...and the One who cares about the earth and its inhabitants:
15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

Jesus' job, and thus OUR job as his disciples is to work for reconciliation, for peace. It's not to keep a set of rules...a list of things we DON'T do that somehow make us better than those who DO. It is to replicate the life of Jesus in our everyday lives...to look for opportunities to mend, and not to divide...to make disciples who's chief agenda is not to argue why they are right, but to extend the hand of mercy to the wrong and the wronged.

I shouldn't attempt a re-preach, as Jonathan delivered this message with a holy authority that I may never attain...(LISTEN once it is posted--it's long but worth it), but I feel so relieved that I can get passionate about what TO DO. It's the Kingdom of God here, living through us, that will bring hope and salvation. In this world of war and turmoil, I was reminded of one of my favorite hymns today:

My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame, But wholly trust in Jesus’ Name.
When darkness hides His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale, my anchor holds within the veil.
On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.
His oath, His covenant, His blood, support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way, He then is all my Hope and Stay.
On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.
When He shall come with trumpet sound, Oh may I then in Him be found.
Dressed in His righteousness alone, Faultless to stand before the throne.
On Christ the solid Rock I stand, All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

Obama and McCain did not come to save me or America. They are subject to the only King. In Him I trust.

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