Sorrowful, yet Rejoicing

2 Corinthians 6:2-4, 10a 2 For he says, “In a favorable time I listened to you, and in a day of salvation I have helped you.“  Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation. 3 We put no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, 4 but as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: … 10 as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing…

As I watch and listen to the followers of Christ, I sense that many share the inner struggle that repeatedly pulls at me as I think about election day and the future of the U.S.  I admit that I have moments that border on despair as I ponder on what looks like a dead end road.  Other times my heart fills with great hope.  I have searched the Scripture for answers as to how to respond and walk in faithfulness.  2 Corinthians 6 continues to encourage my heart and give light for what lies ahead.  As I observe the now and consider the future, I find my heart both sorrowful and rejoicing.  

  • I am sorrowful that the two main presidential candidates represent impropriety, situational ethics, and a vindictive spirit.  My heart grieves that the nation has to choose between people who obviously lack character.  As a result, one can only conclude that character does not matter for most Americans…disheartening.
  • I am sorrowful that North Carolina has become the battleground for what appears to be a win/lose situation for the transgender bathroom issue.  How has a state in the heart of what was once the Bible Belt become a tipping point on the issue of whether we are male and female?  With a grieving heart, I confess that we are clearly exchanging the Truth of God for a lie.  (I hope that the presidential confusion does not overshadow this important issue on election day.)
  • I am sorrowful that the people of God have attacked one another over the issues surrounding this election.  Brothers and sisters, we of all people should be able to show a divided nation how to disagree and have civil debate without turning on one another and giving into name calling.  

However…

  • I rejoice to see the obvious way that the Lord God is awakening his people to the Truth.  Both through our local church and around the Nation people are again being drawn to the teaching and preaching of God’s Word and to joining in the mission of God around the world… “Behold, now is the favorable time…”
  • I rejoice to see men and women who are committed to planting churches and calling existing churches to repentance and renewal for the sake of the gospel.  Weekly I come into contact with people who are committed to plant churches in difficult and spiritually dry places all around the U.S.  As a result, the gospel is being proclaimed and people are coming to faith in Christ in places like inner city Baltimore, NYC, and Blue Ridge, S.C… “behold, now is the day of salvation.”  
  • I rejoice that when I wake up on Wednesday, November 9, 2016 the Lord God will still be on his throne, the Holy Spirit will still be moving on this earth, and we will still be longing for the coming of Jesus Christ the Son (…if He does not come before then, Maranatha!).

As you consider how you will carry yourself the day after the election, please reflect on 2 Cor. 6:3 “we put no obstacle in anyone’s way.” I believe that regardless of what happens on Tuesday, gospel opportunities will abound.  Gloating or bemoaning must not be our posture.  Yet, we must remain sorrowful and rejoicing.  Sorrow reminds believers and nonbelievers of the need for the gospel. Rejoicing reminds believers and nonbelievers of the hope of the gospel.  Gospel faithfulness in this world will continue to require both.  

Speak Your Mind

*