For the past year or so, one phrase has been on my mind – “the remnant”. One dictionary definition is “a small surviving group of people”. I’ve heard it multiple times in several messages to the church. “God is looking for the remnant” meaning He’s looking for the REAL believers within the church, as we know it, who will follow after Him with their hearts and actions as well as what they say. But America is a “Christian” nation, right?
We can open any yellow pages or search online and find a large variety of Christian churches which gives the impression that Christians are a large percentage of America. According to polls, 92% of Americans believe in God (although it’s not specific on if they refer to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob), 85% believe in Heaven, 74% believe in Hell, and it goes on with votes for reincarnation and the like. Tens of millions of Americans profess to be Christian, but how is it that many aren’t sure if there is a Heaven and even less believe Hell exists? If being Christian means acknowledging the virgin birth, recognizing Jesus was God and man, realizing He paid for our sins on the cross and rose again, making Him our Lord and Savior, picking up our crosses to follow after Him, then why isn’t there more impact here? If Christians are friends of God and enemies to the world, then why has this country been so accepting of us?
It seems that most modern day Christians are actually not Believers at all. We have gotten away from Christ and Him crucified to teach what Jesus can do for us. We’ve basically been trying to sell God and market the church to get people saved by any means necessary including promising money, telling people God loves them just the way they are (interpreted to mean Christians can be saved and still act like they did before), watering down God’s Word so it doesn’t offend anyone, trying to make unholy things holy…..
These last few months, I’ve been taking a long, hard look at myself to see where I’ve been falling short. One of the biggest changes I made was that I started to look at what I’ve learned, what I do, what I believe and lining it up with the Bible and trying to follow the lead of the Holy Spirit. I can no longer do something just because it’s popular, it’s tradition or some pastor said to do it if I know God tells me not to do it. I’ve been looking at every area of my life from food to music to how to know if I’m under the right leadership so I can continue to grow because I clearly have a lot to learn.
As I looked at my newborn Sunday night, a frightening realization hit me. I’m responsible for teaching and guiding her into the path to follow God and honor Him. I’ve known, intellectually, that it’s a major part of my service to Him which is why I’ve made so many changes over the past year, but we usually don’t think about that when we envision our family life. We think about getting married and having children. I looked at her and realized if she’d never been born, then I’d never be concerned over whether she went to Heaven or Hell because she wouldn’t exist. Now this little person is here, and I’m directly responsible for starting her on the right path because if I don’t teach her and my other children properly, I am directly responsible for helping to send them to Hell. That realization dropped on me like a ton of bricks.
Time is short, and we’ve only got one chance to get this right because our very souls depend on the decisions we make here on earth. Eternity is a long time to be wrong. My recent and continuing focus has been on what we’re doing and why. What’s really going on? Are we truly doing what we should, or have we changed things to accommodate our egos and schedules? I’ve been discovering quite a bit….
(Originally posted in 2010)