Upon arriving back home to the states, I was bombarded with the news of everything that was going wrong in the world. It was as if the foreboding spirit that had held me captive in my troubled youth had once again returned and was pulling me down into the depths of hopelessness and despair. The statements consisted of the state of the American economy, how school lunches have become inedible, how the youth of our day are being brainwashed by the media and can no longer remain abstinent and subsequently how the abortion rate has risen exponentially, and lastly, how President Obama was going to be the downfall of our country. I use to believe in the notion that the world was coming to an end and that the human idea of morality was so far off that there was no hope for us. My mind rested on the idea of a condemned world in which there was no chance for light. All in all, I had a pretty hopeless world view. It’s crazy to see how drastically my perspective has changed in just two years, since meeting God. Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind” took on a whole new meaning in my life. A major role in my transformation occurred in India where I saw people who had worshiped idols their entire lives, bowing down to Jesus, overwhelmed by the immensity of His love. I saw broken kids be put back together again by the healing power of His love, and hope put into the eyes of women who had been beaten into submission. I didn’t know what poor was until I saw a woman dressed in rags slowly walking to each of the cars at a stoplight begging for change and then as she walked slowly back to a small piece of concrete littered with trash which I presumed she called home. Or the children who took turns walking around with a baby they had purposefully starved all day in one hand and a rotten bottle in the other asking for money in hopes that looking at the state of the infant people would feel more inclined to hand over extra cash. Even people who are considered “poor” in America live in better conditions than this and yet we still find something else to complain about. And I can’t help but think that God called us to be the light of the world (Matthew 5:14). How are we to be light, if all we do is speak darkness over it?
“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.” – Matthew 5:13
He’s called us to preserve light in the world, to hold fast to what is good and give the world hope. Once we begin to condemn the world that we are supposed to love, then we are no longer useful. If you continually tell a child that he is stupid and will never amount to anything, then he will spend his whole life either resisting you, or submitting to the idea that he is a worthless individual. I think we have forgotten to love people as He has loved us. And even more so, I believe we have forgotten what love really is.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Let us begin to put hope back into the world and pray for the problems that our country is facing. “Let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). Let us be a nation that is not known for the struggles we face but the hope and faith we have in God to see us through to victory.