Culture Wars and Persecution
Last week, many Americans were involved in or witnessed a culture war involving a certain poultry restaurant (which will not be named). This post is not meant to stir up a debate on that issue, but rather to note something that happened during that time…
Via social media, I saw numerous posts with very strong opinions on both sides of the issue. One in particular stood out to me. It was from a non-Christian friend who said “If you legitimately believe that Christians are persecuted, then you are not someone I want to associate myself with.”
Now believe it or not, this is a friend who I knew I could have a very open conversation with. I talked with him about it and told him that I believed that Christians in other countries were persecuted…in fact I had to (my work counted on me believing that).
He smiled and acknowledged that he was really just thinking of American Christians (I had figured that was the case). It opened up a very interesting dialogue about how he thought Christians in other parts of the world were very different than American Christians.
It got me thinking… would we Christians in America be ready for the same persecution our brothers and sisters around the world face? Would we react the same way that they would if our home was burned down? Would we be strong enough to stand firm in our faith if we were sentenced to death?
I realize that there are Christians in America who have faced forms of persecution (whether from family members, co-workers, friends etc), but the vast majority of Christians in America have not had to deal with the same kind of persecution that our brothers and sisters from around the world have faced.
In a recent interview, Open Doors USA President Carl Moeller stated that “In my mind today, the picture I have is a church in a diabetic coma that has gorged itself on the sweets of affluence, materialism, and the idolatry of worshipping the materialistic world. That diabetic coma is now life threatening. We as a church are at the point of death � not the church in the Middle East. We are the ones who can no longer rouse ourselves to even pray for an hour on behalf of things that God would have us pray for.”
It’s a harsh reality, but we as American Christians need to wake up- we are nowhere near ready for the persecution many of our brothers and sisters face.
I really like Carl’s last comment and view it as a challenge…..can I try to incorporate an hour of my day praying for the things that God would have me pray for?