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What Are We To Do?

September 27, 2023

Leadership Notes


“Oh, no, we’re doomed.” So said Violet at the notion of Charlie Brown directing the Christmas play.


That’s how I feel when I think about what civic responsibility is coming up in a little over a year. What is our responsibility as voting American citizens who are also strangers living in a strange land? What is my responsibility as a pastor? Do I even address these kinds of issues? What are our responsibilities as members of a church? How do we navigate and negotiate such things?


All I know is, if the options aren’t either named Vivek or RFK, Jr., then I might be sitting this deal out. What’s a reasonable, rational person to do? That’s not a rhetorical question. If you’ve got some answers, you know my email. I’m open to any and all thoughts and suggestions.


So far, it appears our frontrunners are one guy who’s a joke on an inexorable slide to being jokier…and another guy, a weasel on his way to increasing his weaseliness. What are we to do? Again, that’s not rhetorical. I remain open to any thoughts or suggestions.


Sometimes I like to play a game in my mind, “If I Were President.” I love those kinds of games, because there’s no cost, consequence, and you can never lose. Well, if you do lose, then we need to talk.


Anyway, in my game, first thing I’d do is abolish the IRS and FBI. Then let the dust settle a bit before tackling the other overgrown bureaucracies of the administrative state. I would move on to ridding our country of the Departments of Education, Health and Human Services, Interior, Homeland Security, and Transportation.


If I hadn’t been assassinated by the CIA at that point {they do things like that}, next I would ban paying a single cent more to the United Nations as well as cut back on foreign aid…without remorse. As a side note, “60 Minutes” has reported that the U.S. {that’s our tax dollars} is financing more than weapons in Ukraine. Our government is buying seeds/fertilizer for farmers, paying the salaries of tens of thousands of first responders and subsidizing small businesses. When does it stop? When should it stop? Again, not rhetorical.


I find little comfort in playing my minds games. My comfort is in Christ and Christ alone. We will always live in and through trying times. As explained in the Bible and expanded on by people like Augustine and Calvin, human sin and depravity knows no bounds. That’s why God has instituted governments to protect and defend our God-given freedoms. Sometimes, though, it seems like we need to be protected from government.


A candidate like Artaxerxes {look him up} would not be a bad choice. But wherever our conscience leads us, we will continue to shine in spite of what’s going on in the world. I love how one pastor puts it:


“There is not a hint of hand-wringing paranoia about the darkness

of our world in the New Testament. There is clear-eyed realism,

yes. But in the place of fearmongering, we find charges to

steadiness, trust, calmness, peace, gospel hope, bearing the

Spirit’s fruit, and REJOICNG.”


- Owen Strachan


Finally, before Your Moment of Spurgeon, here’s the best summary of a teaching from Jesus without actually citing it as a summary of a teaching from Jesus that I’ve ever read:


PLEASE LOVE YOURSELF INSTEAD OF LOVING THE IDEA OF

OTHER PEOPLE LOVING YOU.


And now, without further ado:


“Praise should be proportionate to its object, therefore let it be

infinite when rendered unto the Lord. We cannot praise Him too

much, too often, to zealously, too carefully, too joyfully.”


- C.H.S.

Almost Always of Good Cheer,


Richard

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