A Thought From My Friend Pastor Jeff Dodson of Richlands Gospel Church, Richlands, NC
FIRST LIGHT OF THE DAY
Psm. 9:17, "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God."
Nobody likes to hear a negative message. (For the record, most preachers don't enjoy delivering them, either.) Certainly, on this Independence Day, it is my desire that we would all unite with grateful hearts to praise God for the blessings He has bestowed on this great nation; and to plead with Him for guidance and divine intervention that we might get our nation back on the right path. That being said, I still can't help but think about the dangers that we are facing in America today.
Before I go any further, let me beg your pardon if you think I am beating that same old drum again; much of this has already been said. We have become so distracted by the manifold issues that we are facing that we have lost sight of the real problem. Let me use an illustration. When a firefighter begins his training, one of the first things he learns is that it takes at least three elements to sustain a fire: fuel, heat, and oxygen. Take away one or more of these elements, and the fire goes out. When a fire truck pulls up to a burning house, they don't jump out of the truck and start spraying water on the bushes in front of the house -- they go inside and put the fire out. Then, if the bushes are still smoldering, they may spray a little water on them. By the same token, if you have a pot catch fire on your stove; you don't stand there, with the pot burning, and fan the smoke toward the window. You put a lid on the pot and smother the fire out. Then you can worry about the smoke. I'm afraid this is what we are doing in our country.
We are trying to repair the breach between Democrats and Republicans; we are trying to settle the tensions between white people and black people; we are worried about hiding from a virus that no one can see; and we are fretting over economic, employment, and educational issues: but all the while we have forgotten there's a fire burning that threatens to reduce our nation to ashes. I am talking about apathy toward, and in many cases, open hostility against, God and His Holy Word.
Elias Boudinot, (1740 - 1821), Director of the U.S. Mint, Congressional Representative of New Jersey, President of the Continental Congress; said, "Our country should be preserved from the dreadful evil of becoming enemies of the religion of the Gospel, which I have no doubt, but would be the introduction of the dissolution of government and the bonds of civil society." When the Legislative and Judicial branches of our government put their seal of approval on same sex marriage and the slaughter of the unborn, we are put in the position of enemies to the Gospel. And we are put in danger of forgetting God.
What we need is not more police, or less police. We have police already -- just let them do their job. What we need is not more funding, or more perfect policies. WHAT WE NEED IS JESUS!! We need God and His Word, or else we are headed for more troubles than we have seen. We must restore and recognize God's authority in our nation, in our courts, in our churches, and in our homes. Let's put the fire out, then we can come together and fan away the smoke.
Happy Independence Day. Pray for our country. God bless America and God bless you!