THE PULSE of Prince of Peace
Prince of Peace Lutheran Church newsletter.
Too few are listening to Jesus today!
by Walt Hasbach
I am writing this letter with a heavy heart asking myself why have we gone so far from the traditional Christian values? I look around and ask where is the choir? Where are the Bell Ringers? Why are the Pews mostly empty? Is it that we just don't care? Here is what John was instructed to write:
Revelation 3:14-22 "To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: These are the words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the ruler of God's creation. I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm-neither hot nor cold-I am about to spit you out of my mouth. You say, 'I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.' But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined in the fire, so you can become rich; and white clothes to wear, so you can cover your shameful nakedness; and salve to put on your eyes, so you can see. Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat down with my Father on his throne. Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches."
In a world troubled with one crisis after another I again ask what is the biggest issue facing American Christians today? Is it a society in which there are no absolutes and every individual is a free agent and we are taught to be self-reliant and independent? Christianity is no longer the faith of young adults. And that along with pride is among the issues facing Christians. It opens the door for everything else to come in and that causes so much separation in the church today. The church is sick and it doesn’t want to admit it. You have to admit you have a problem before you can fix it. And the few who do recognize it only want to separate themselves and pass judgment. It’s time to love the church back to health. The same way Christ loved us to salvation.
Perhaps, the biggest problem is that we’re headed in the wrong direction. What used to be known truths about Christianity are now unknown mysteries to a large and growing population of Americans, especially young adults. Does the future lie with progressives who can adapt and change; or with conservatives who remain faithful to the old paths? Are Christians today basically too mean or too cowardly? Here is what is written in:
Psalm 9:7-10 The LORD reigns forever; he has established his throne for judgment. He rules the world in righteousness and judges the peoples with equity. The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.
Christianity is about doing the right thing. The U.S.A. is a great place to live, and life is so much fun, but honesty in people is something very difficult to find. There is a crisis due to a breakdown of trust. The real question is who do people trust? I could list a great number of people and organizations I have a problem with, but I won't. Christians need to return to basics and live Christ-like lives that build trust and point individuals to the Master we serve.
Christianity has added more value to American culture than any other religion, philosophy, ideology or community. Yet, contemporary Americans are hard pressed to identify any specific value added. In this time in history when image is reality, and life-changing decisions are made on the basis of images, the church is in dangerous need of a more positive and accessible image.
When you look to the Lord Jesus he can really touch your heart to the degree that your love for him makes you a slave to him. And, we must be capable and articulate in speaking of our faith that others can believe what we are saying. So, seek Him. Ask Him to show you what you’re supposed to do. That’s always been the underlying power of Christianity. When believer's have a one-on-one relationship with the Lord, meditate on His word, he/she can witness to others bringing God's word alive in the hearts and minds of others. Psalm 46:10. Be still and know that I am God. These words tell us to listen for direction, because that’s the one great issue facing Christ’s church today: Too few are listening to Him!