So I go to bed tonight with Jesus' words ringing in my ear, "If anyone hears My sayings and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world, but to save the world," (John 12:47 NASB) and thus continues a process that God is doing within my heart and mind and ultimately leads me to write this a 2 am this morning.
The Judgment Seat
Jesus, who had every right to judge mankind for their actions, said that he did not come to judge but to save. Today I read a myriad of comments from people expressing hatred toward a person that many, if not most, believe killed her own daughter. Will we ever know the truth? Probably not. But even if we did, is it our place to judge? And when we do, what does that do to us? Are we truly better than the people we judge? What is it that happens inside of me when I judge? For me, it causes a sufficient distraction from what God has called me to do, and who he has called me to be. It begins a root of bitterness and hatred that will destroy me from the inside out. I am a disciple of Christ, and as such I have not been called to judge mankind, but be a part of God's mission to save it!
Friends and fellow followers of Christ, take yourself out of the judgment seat. It is not designed for you or I and we have no business trying to put ourselves there. Channel that frustration at the gates of Hell, knock them down and bring people out. Our battle is not against flesh and blood but against .... Before i continue down that vein lets walk down another.
Living in Hell
Do I believe Hell is real? Yes. Do I know what hell is? Not fully. Do I think it is a place where people should go, for any reason? Absolutely not! As he hung there, after being beaten within an inch of his life, back open and bleeding from a lashing that has literally cut to the bone, head throbbing from the long thorns that are piercing it from all directions, and struggling for breathe, my savior says, "Father, forgive them..." Jesus died so that we could get out of Hell and into God's kingdom. Jesus died so that murders could be forgiven. Don't ever, for a moment forget that!
With this thought in mind, I realize that, if everything I believe about life and death is true, Caylee's Hell ended 3 years ago and that she is truly in a better place. Yet my thoughts still go toward what her final hours might have been like. Let’s just say, I didn't want to dwell there. But the truth is, we all need to dwell there more. We, people who are called by God be a part of his great kingdom right here and right now, need to pull our heads out of the sand and become aware of the Hell that is going on around us.
People are living in Hell all around us. Children are living in Hell right now. They are being abused and tossed away on a daily basis and the church is not rising up and rescuing them! I read an article the other day that said this "if each congregation adopted even one child, there would be no orphans in America." (Full article is linked below)
If you are angry about the Casey Anthony trial, then i urge you to channel that energy and frustration toward the Hell that people live in every day. Do the research, get thoroughly ticked off about something that is happening in this world that you can't stand and then get involved in eradicating it. Read about organizations like the International Justice Mission and the A21 campaign. Sink your teeth into the Invisible Children project. Go to the Eli Project and learn about children with special needs all over the world who won't ever be accepted by their societies. Check out the children in your local foster system who need a loving family who will choose them and show them a love that they have yet to experience.
Being a Light
"You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden; nor does anyone light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 5:14-16 NASB)
All Christians are called to be light in a very dark world. That light is designed to be taken to dark places and lifted high. So go and do that. We are in a battle. And it is a fight to the finish. Thankfully for us, the people who are true Christians, the battle is already won. The question is, how many will you be bringing with you?
Here are some much tougher questions for you. Who won't make it to Glory because you didn't pull them out of darkness? What child was sold into slavery and abused every day for their entire life because you didn't rise up and save them. What young man is on the streets today because you said another child in your family would be too difficult and as a result they didn't get adopted by anyone? How many would not be dying of Aids today if you had stepped in and made a difference? These are just a few tough questions that many of us need to dwell on more.
Can We Ever Get Back to Sleep
So this is what I wake up to at 2 in the morning. Things that weigh on my heart. Desires for a world that knows and feels God's love in such a powerful way, that it is left marked and changed.
It's time to Wake Up!
I don't know what God has in store for you. I don't know how difficult it will be to accomplish. But what I do know is this, you are here to be in the saving business!. Go out and be a part of someone's rescue! Go pull people out of Hell and show them what God's love is really like.
A Few Links
- Eli Project http://www.eliproject.org
- A21 Campaign http://www.thea21campaign.org
- International Justice Mission http://www.ijm.org
- Invisible Children http://www.invisiblechildren.com