by Norm Miller
What a world. On the heels of hosting the universal “let’s-all-play-nice-together” games, Russia invades Ukraine’s Crimean region.
Not long after, a Malaysian airliner vanishes.
Continually, Christians around the world join the burgeoning ranks of martyrs.
Frequently, public officials holding various offices are arrested for child porn, embezzlement, and other nefarious deeds.
Daily, young girls and boys are drugged and kidnapped, then enslaved for profit to satisfy others’ perversions.
What a world.
If a Christian isn’t careful, the swirling cesspool of world’s woes can overwhelm one.
Such a sense captured my pastor and me this past week as we spent two days — really, just 36 hours – visiting a Native American reservation outside Omaha, Nebraska, in consideration of a summer mission trip.
As former NAMB missionary, Pastor Ron Goombi, drove us around the small town, our hearts broke to hear of the residents’ plight, and see it, too.
Whereas in times past alcoholism ran high in these communities, Satan has an additional evil destroying even more lives, meth. And it’s breaking bad on the reservation.
We observed the cold cruelties of the insidious ice.
We learned of pregnant teens smoking meth, and then abandoning their suffering babies with another relative – usually a grandmother – because addictive escapism is inescapable.
We heard about the youngest of alcoholics, teens who imbibe daily.
We saw houses – just skeletons of their former structures: no windows, no doors, a few boarded-up. And in some of these, the poorest of the poor still live.
Whether found in macro- or microcosm, “sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”
What a world. What’s a Christian to do?
What a promise!
“Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee” Is. 26.3 (KJV).
What’s a Christian to do? Well, first off, claim that promise. Live in the reality of Is. 26.3.
Sure, there are answers to the litany of lusts cited above. In fact, one answer: the saving message of Jesus Christ, the world’s only hope.
As proclaimers of the Good News, our message would seem ineffective lest we first are living in God’s peace. And that is initially accomplished by living pure lives. Wholesome lives. Lives above reproach.
Hardly can we be at peace with God if we harbor sin. And if we harbor sin, how dare we tell others of its remedy? That’s kind of like wearing lead boots while claiming we know how to swim.
Apply Is. 26.3 in reverse:
“Because I trust in you, God, my mind is always on you; and as a result, you give me unfettered, unadulterated, unflappable peace.”
If this is where we live, then we are able to share that peace with any local or global community no matter how darkened by evil oppression.
What a world. What a promise. What a Savior.