Be the change you want to see in the world

Published 8:16 am Friday, September 27, 2019

The status quo is the existing state of affairs. It is what we would call normal, or what we have accepted as the new normal. It’s impossible to create change when you accept the status quo. When you create a movement for change, you don’t accept business as usual, but instead search for ways to create change. When you look at our world and what is going on all around us, does it bother you? Do you think that the world is too far gone for help, or do you believe change for the better can still be made? I know Satan wants us to believe the world is too far gone, and we need to sit quietly and wait on the Lord’s return, but this is far from the truth of God’s Word! Many folks within the church buy into this mindset. They believe our community, our nation, and our world has reached a point of no return, and nothing can be done to correct the issues. The easiest thing to do is nothing!
I refuse to believe that what we see in churches across America is what God planned for His people. I refuse to believe that it is the God-intended norm. The Word of God is against it. Church history is against it. What the Spirit is doing around the world is against it. What I have experienced in my own life is against it. I believe God has called upon his people to be agents of change! I know God expects us to move with compassion and to make a difference. I do not believe that change can’t or won’t happen if we choose to do something rather than nothing. Everything inside of me is shouting, “We must do more! We can’t give up! We must make a difference! There is still hope!” Is that same voice shouting inside of you, or do hear a voice that says, “It is useless! What’s the point? Hopefully this will all be over soon! We might as well quit trying!” This latter voice is not the voice of truth! Satan wants us to give in and give up! He wants the church backed in a corner with its tail between its legs in fear doing nothing while waiting on the coming of the Lord! The church today has a heaven mindset! We are tired and weary and waiting on something far better. This is not God’s intentions for his church that he called to be more than conquerors in Christ Jesus! When the scriptures say we must endure unto the end, it does not mean to sit quietly and do nothing and think of heaven while the world around us gets worse and worse with evil. Jesus said the servant that would be blessed upon his return is the servant that he found so doing! God has called his church to do something, and it is high time to start!
Perhaps you have shopped in a store where the basic floor layout is the same as it was 40 years ago. The store clerks wearily go about their work as caretakers of a dying entrepreneurial dream. Somewhere along the way, the status quo began its degenerating work. Rather than keeping up with the latest trends and changing accordingly, the store owner decided that what once worked will always work, thus there was no real need to “rock the boat;” and, with such an attitude, the store quietly rocks toward a status-quo bankruptcy. This is exactly what happened is the past years with Kmart and Sears. While stores around them began to search for new and exciting ways to reach customers, they did not change their business practices.
Does such a scenario as presented above have any relevance in the realm of spirituality? Yet, even in spiritual matters, there is an ever-present danger of allowing the status-quo to lull Christians and churches into a sleepy sense that “rocking the boat” is always negative and difficult. Such is simply not the case! We have been led to believe that we can continue to do the same things we have done for years and it will still work! Don’t get me wrong, friends, the message of the church should never change, but the way the message is presented to this generation must change!
It is, indeed, easier simply to continue what has always been done; it is simpler to believe that what worked a generation ago will work just as effectively today. The Christians in Laodicea fell prey to such notions and became a church in trouble. In fact, Jesus told them, “So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spew you out of my mouth” (Revelation 3:16). This status-quo apathy does not arise overnight, but instead gradually occurs as each member loses his or her zeal to serve God as effectively as possible. This can often have an impact on church leaders who grow discouraged because of an overall lack of excitement displayed by the congregation toward the work of the Lord. The cross is still relevant, the blood still washes away sins, and the tomb is still empty! These facts are forever settled in heaven, and yes, even in this modern-day world they make all the difference in lives of those that will accept them! We have been endued with power from on high, and we must use this power to go into our world, refuse the status quo, and make a difference! Yes, I still believe in transforming power of the gospel, and I know that we can see improvements in our world. I refuse to believe that the entire world has gone to Hell in a handbasket, and there’s nothing to do but wait on the end! Let’s get on our feet, makes some changes, and make the world a better place. Be the change you want to see in the world!
(The Solution Column is provided by Pastor Brandon Young of Harmony Free Will Baptist Church, Hampton, and his associate, the Rev. David Odom.)

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