Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Trials

I always enjoy Dan's posts over at Cerulean Sanctum. His posts are consistently thought provoking, enlightening, challenging, and point to Scripture. Even besides all that, I like his posts because of the single fact that he makes me feel a little less crazy.

Case in point:
"...If our lives are peaches and cream most of the time, if we’re poster children for the American Dream, then we’re not a threat. The demonic doesn’t take us seriously, because if it did we’d be feeling and seeing the attacks..."

"...Here’s the worst thing that anyone can say about you or me as Christians: 'You’re no threat to the Devil.'"

Sadly, I believe that large swaths of the American Church are just that. The Enemy distracts us with consumerism, entertainment, fads (even church-related ones), and an all-consuming loathing for anything that even remotely borders on boring. We know the entire storyline behind Lost, can name every contestant on the last American Idol, can’t wait to plop down a small fortune on the next iteration of Xbox or Playstation, spend more on movie theater tickets or DVDs than we drop in the offering plate, and generally run willy-nilly after umpteen thousand things that neutralize our threat on the grand cosmic battlefield. Without even breaking a sulfurous sweat, the dark principalities and powers have rendered millions of American Christians fat, lazy, double-minded, and utterly worthless for battle..."

Excerpts from: When The Devils Know Your Name
and:
"...Most of us wouldn’t last through two days of genuine tribulation. The closest we’ve been to tribulation is at family reunions when grandpa talks about the Depression. Oh, and pass the corn on the cob slathered in butter.

I don’t know if we’re headed into tribulation or not. It sure seems like it. Only God knows.

But here’s what I’m certain of: For Christians alive during that tribulation, it’s going to feel like defeat. I don’t say that blithely. We may look around and see nothing but utter chaos, even within our families..."

"...For Christians, it will feel as if God has abandoned us because all the benefits we’ve known as believers will be bitterly, and perhaps even successfully, opposed. Life and faith won’t work like they normally do. The foundation won’t feel secure. Madness may strike someone you love. Cruel people might take your children away from you. When the forces of hell fight that last battle, they will not go down without taking out as many of us as they can.

It will look like defeat, folks. It will smell, taste, sound, and feel like it, too.

You’ll hear pollyanna Christians talking about how it will all be better. But it won’t be. And those pollyannas will one by one reject the faith because they built their hope on rainbows and fluffy bunnies instead of the Rock. People you know, even people who pledged allegiance to Christ, will turn on you to save themselves. Your best friend may sell you for a loaf of bread..."

Excerpts from: Live From the Battlefield

1 comment:

Jeremy C said...

I like how Jesus says upon this rock I'll build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. I think to often we think of this verse as warm and fuzzy protecting us from the big bad devil who can't attack us with his gates. Hopefully we recognize that gates are defensive, which means Christ's implication is for the Church to be offensive. So really the call to follow Chist is to leave yourself to become a gate crasher.