Time to celebrate
One of the weapons that Satan uses against us is discouragement and hopelessness. Yesterday I said something about how encouraged I am about the vast numbers of young people I’ve observed who are attending church. Immediately I received an e-mail disparaging mega-churches detailing how their services are not what they need to be and blah blah blah. It seems that some people just cannot bring themselves to enjoy hearing good news. I can only comment on what I saw at the churches I attended and that was the word of God being preached and the Spirit of God moving through them with fervor.
Subsequently I received this e-mail from another reader: “My grandson just started his Freshman year at Auburn. He said he was amazed at how many people asked him where he went to church? Not “do you go to church”? It is assumed you go to church. Six churches went together and had a retreat for incoming Freshman. They could only take 300. They had so many wanting to go they had to have two sessions. He is going to a church that has 5 services every Sunday. I am loving Auburn University for my grandson!!!!!”
A friend of mine sent me the following statistics yesterday concerning the Jesus film. If you are not familiar with it the film is the book of Luke made into a movie by Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU). The Jesus film is now available in 1673 languages, in 2017 there were 374,667,806 viewings; 42,318,303 indicated decisions for Christ; and 432,076 churches/groups started.
While those figures dwarf what we are doing at the Jesus Alliance our goal of uniting Christians and to provide them with the truth of God, and mobilize them to take action to build the kingdom is making excellent progress. So far in 2018, our YTD Post Reach is 20,112,395 and our YTD engagement is 2,929,470 (number of times people took action that we can document). We delivered one message promoting allowing children to study the Bible that went viral with 2.96 million views and another that steered over 1.3K people to an article on an Arizona child sex sting where we published the perpetrators’ names. We are making great progress in achieving our goals and are deeply appreciative for those who have helped to finance our success.
I suppose someone – somewhere will not accept the foregoing as good news; however, to all but the most cynical there is much to celebrate in this world. Yes, the media, arts and entertainment, government and other spheres of influence disgust us daily, but don’t let it get you down. Those of us who love the Lord are taking the Gospel and the truth of God to the streets of America and to the most remote mud huts around the world.
One problem is that those who despise God and anything positive in that regard do not want you to receive good news. Recently the Jesus Alliance made the decision to modify our website, newsletters and other tools of communication to regularly spotlight the successes and those individuals and ministries who are making a difference and achieving outstanding results to bring you the good news that is so difficult to find elsewhere. It will take a few weeks to modify the website and other tools to accommodate this effort, (and some badly needed funding,) but we feel sure the Lord will provide.
In the meantime, CELEBRATE the progress that is being made and put a smile on your face. Don’t be like one of my vice presidents in the mail order company that I founded. If we got a huge deposit on Monday I would be whooping it up and slapping him on the back only to be greeted with a glum look and sour response, “All this huge deposit means is that tomorrow’s deposit is going to be pitiful.” I looked at him and told him, “Buddy when you are sitting on top of the mountain, bask in the sunlight, there will be plenty of time to mourn when we hit the valley below.”
The Bible is clear that the world will become more and more wicked until God comes back and puts an end to the madness. On the other hand, the world has been just as wicked as it is now since ancient times. Legend has it that Noah preached for 120 years without a single convert before God destroyed it, and in Sodom and Gomorrah God said He would spare the cities if he could find just 50 righteous people and then 40, 30, 20, 10. We are not at that point YET. God will return and no one knows when, but based upon what He did in the past I find it hard to believe He would return with the type of revival going on that is underway. I have no inside information and I do believe we need to act with urgency. The Bible tells us to be ready, but we can be ready with a smile on our face as we lead people to Christ and I do know that He wants that.
And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”