Keynotes – November, 2019

Last month I suggested that we change our questions from “Why God__?” to “What is God up to?” This month (with a little reminder from you guys) I would like to reflect on something from ‘long ago.’

It’s hard to believe that 9/11 was actually 18 years ago! Seniors in High School may not have even been born ‘way back then.’ I’m not sure when the following interview took place, but I have an old email dated from November of 2003. I think it would be good for us to hear it once again.

Billy Graham’s daughter was interviewed on The Early Show and Jane Clayson asked her, “How could God let something like this happen?” (That was in regard to the attacks on 9/11/2001.) Anne Graham gave the following, and I think profound response that certainly bares repeating.

“I believe God is deeply saddened by this, just as we are, but for years we’ve been telling God to get out of our schools, to get out of our government and to get out of our lives. And being the gentleman that He is, I believe He has calmly backed out. How can we expect God to give us His blessing and His protection if we demand that He leave us alone? In light of recent events…terrorist attack, school shootings, etc.

I think it started with Madeline Murray O’Hare (she was murdered, her body found ‘recently’) complained she didn’t want prayer in our schools, and we said OK.

Then Dr. Benjamin Spock said we shouldn’t spank our children when they misbehave because their little personalities would be warped and we might damage their self-esteem. (Dr. Spock’s son committed suicide.) We said an expert should know what he’s talking about. And we said OK.

Now we’re asking ourselves why our children have no conscience, why they don’t know right from wrong, and why it doesn’t bother them to kill strangers, their classmates, and themselves.

Probably, if we think about it long and hard enough, we can figure it out. I think it has a great deal to do with “We reap what we sow.” ” (Eliphaz said, “As I have observed, those who plow evil and those who sow trouble reap it.” Job 4:8)

She could have been interviewed today and it would all be true. Our country is even less tolerant of God’s opinion and involvement than ever in the past. Beyond terrorist attacks there are other areas of attack that are more subtle. For example, the Bible talks about the sexually immoral as not being saved, but the social definition of sexually immoral has been ‘updated’ for 2019 so that it seems there is nothing immoral.

When there is another shooting people are outraged, at least for a short period of time until we, or the news media, get bored with that and move on to something new. We claimed to be a Christian country but the way immigrants are treated worse than dogs we are just fooling ourselves. Not sure about the ‘dog’ thing? Treat a dog the way some people are treated and you won’t get out of prison!

And into all of this was born a little baby who is the Son of God. Jesus grew up with all the hatred we see today. Racial profiling was old news even in His time. And Jesus loved everyone equally. He treated them as beloved Children of God. Sometimes that love required discipline, particularly when it came to the Chief Priest, Pharisees, Scribes, Sadducees and teachers of the law. And through it all His goal was to get people into Heaven.

We have that as our inheritance! We have been given the right to love all people just as God loves all people. And to invite anyone and everyone to submit to God’s authority and become Citizens of Heaven.

The battle around us rages on as it has since Adam and Eve first rejected God, and yet, God, with the help of His people, is working to take us out of this world of sin and carry us home to be with Him forever where there are no more attacks, no more shootings, no one rejecting God or His Children. The peace of God which passes all understanding will be with us in person.

Blessings to you as this year draws to a rapid close.