MY PRAYER cries out for a revolution. If there’s anything that nearly everyone can agree upon, is that we desire change. We can’t continue the way things are going now.
How do some people deal with a crisis? Maybe they take up a conspiracy theory as if it was the new gospel. Or they vent all their existential pain through a cause, movement, or ideology. Some on the political left and right (codenames for power positions?) manipulate the masses and threaten each other with increasing aggression every day. Even many Christians get carried away by it all.
What do I say? There’s nothing I can do to stop them except pray. If I choose to step into their arena, I’m toast. To win that war, you must fight with weapons of violence, distortion, and power abuse.
Isn’t there is a more excellent way?
Worship of “-isms”
One of my nephews is a history major and an anarchist. Many people believe anarchism promotes chaos and destruction. What they really want is the elimination of hierarchical power structures (government, etc.) so people can be left to figure things out on their own. Sounds nice, but would it work in the real world on a large scale?
We’ve debated about the pros and cons of different political “-isms” (capitalism, socialism, etc.). My conclusion is that they all eventually become corrupted by the rich and powerful. Right now, no “-ism” seems to be working out very well. And those who vehemently support a particular system, when it breaks down, they say, “Well no system is perfect, but ours is less imperfect.”
In the end, the problem isn’t the system. Instead it’s us humans and our tendency to sin and to take more than we need. It’s Cain killing Abel again and again. Then the LORD said to Cain, “Where is your brother?” What is our answer to this question today?
The helpless, homeless, weak, and poor get stepped on, left out, and abused in every “-ism”, age, and culture… sometimes even in Catholic-ism and Protestant-ism. This trend marches on relentlessly. Meanwhile, every human soul cries out for redemption. The discerning spiritual eye sees this clearly while others take up arms to express their anguish and frustration.
The call to revolution
The revolution I’m calling for will not be broadcast on social media. It won’t show up on CNN, FOX, HuffPost, Breitbart, or any news channel.
The revolution I call for is a revolution of the spirit with the Holy Spirit as its author.
The soldiers of the revolution will be everyday followers of Christ who will take a long, hard look at their true Christian values. They won’t focus on projecting these values into a vacuum or packaging them in a political brand. They won’t weaponize their values. Instead, they will strive for the true living values of the Beatitudes of Christ to be revealed in their everyday life. They will ask God to the pull the weeds of their sin and to sow the seeds of his loving grace. They might participate in politics, but these servants of God will obey only one Master.
The revolution will have leaders, but they will not seek earthly power. They will influence others though. And their message will be one of action. The message will be a living message that says:
“Help someone. Directly. Concretely. Give someone money, shelter, food, knowledge, or compassion… or all five if you can. Have some skin in the game. Take a risk with your heart by putting it in someone’s hands. Repeat this as many times as you like, but seek day-to-day, in-person engagement rather than broad superficial impact. Go ahead and work within an organization but dive deeper. Bring someone who needs help into your inner circle. Be not afraid. Seek forgiveness every day. Do these things as individuals and as a church.”
I’m not saying what has been done up until now has no value. It’s all part of God’s plan. But to face the challenges of today’s reality, things must change. Some already practice their faith in this manner, but in a revolution, it goes viral.
If you choose this way of life, you will get frustrated and scared sometimes. You’ll wonder, “Did I open myself up too much here? Am I too attached and exposed?” And when you kneel down in prayer, you will see Christ on the cross, his arms wide open, and you will have your answer… and you will see his glory working in you and through you.
This revolution will outlive any president, king, country, or political system. It will see walls rise and fall. It will flourish in the shadow of even the harshest oppression. It will survive past horrific wars and disasters, and its soldiers will then move in to bury the dead, bandage wounds, and conquer hearts with the Gospel of Christ.
This conquest of hearts and lives, one-by-one, is the revolutionary path. I believe this is where we should focus our efforts. I’m not saying politics aren’t important, but I don’t feel represented too much these days by anyone. The problem is that someone always comes along to rig the game—either by deceit, force, or both.
History doesn’t encourage me much—but Jesus does.
Every strong supporter of any system must be an idealist. If any ideal finally makes sense to me—and actually works to transform lives—then the “system” I choose is Jesus Christ. I can work and live under any number of political structures, but the one I serve under will always be the same—the Kingdom of Heaven.
Some revolutionaries will pay a great price. Some will even die for the cause, as did their Leader and Lord Jesus.
The why and how of the revolution
Let it burn into your heart once again.
Our Lord rode triumphantly into Jerusalem over 2000 years ago. He was brutalized and died on the cross—given up for our sins—an innocent victim of religious and political power systems. He rose from the dead and ascended into heaven…
… and Christ will come again on the clouds of heaven.
How will the revolution happen, you ask? The Scriptures show us explicitly how.
Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; pray therefore the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.” (Matthew 9:37-38)
If we don’t pray, nothing will happen. Double your prayer efforts. Pray unselfishly for the transformation and blessings of God to come to the multitudes you will never know.
Prepare well, O you soldier of Christ.
Cast away that which you do not need. Cast away your burdens. Be quick and agile. Be sober and steadfast. Ask to trust more in God. Ask to love courageously. Follow the way the Lord has prepared for you.
And pray for the Holy Spirit to take hold of you, and of your church, and of the Body of Christ to do the will of God.
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