Are you willing to lay down your frustrations? Are you ready to turn loose your unforgiveness? The harvest is before us, and we cannot afford to lose momentum in this season. We want someone else to fix our nation’s problems, but it’s become clear: The hard work is up to us.
The answers to the problems that vex us do not reside in the platforms of political parties. The only hope for our future is the hope of Jesus Christ. The awkward truth is we’ve had more confidence and faith in political and economic power, and in the power of purse strings, than in the power of God.
Whether your candidate won the election, or didn’t, we have to be able to accept the transition. In 1 Timothy 2:1-4, we are given a biblical assignment to pray for those in authority over us. Their political party doesn’t matter. Our assignment is to pray they will lead us in godliness and holiness. The Bible says when we do this, it is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and come to a knowledge of the Truth. This Truth is what our nation needs.
The election results should not surprise us
The changes we’ve awoken to have been coming for many years. Marriage was redefined years ago. We’ve been aborting 3,000 children a day for decades. We’ve struggled with hatred, and violence, and unrest for a long time. Those are not new things. We were just so asleep, we weren’t paying attention.
A year ago, before COVID-19 began making an impact in our lives, church leadership discussions tended to focus on how we could make people more comfortable. We talked about closer parking spaces, locating the nursery conveniently close to the sanctuary, having spacious and comfortable seating. We wanted to create a more friendly environment for visitors. These are not evil things, but there was very little discussion about holiness, purity, sacrifice, humility, or repentance. We weren’t focused on being salt in the midst of the culture. We wanted the government to change, while we remained the same.
Then God began to shake us. We were quarantined for a while, and we started to pray. We began to read our Bibles with more diligence, and more hunger. With each passing month, we’ve been awakening to the world around us.
The election came, and half of the nation voted to uphold abortion. This gave us a compass reading on the hearts of the American people, leaving many of us disgusted. We’d prayed, and read our Bibles, and repented of many things. But when we didn’t get the results we wanted, we became discouraged.
Why didn’t God answer our prayers?
We don’t serve the Lord because He answers our prayers immediately. We serve Him because He is righteous, and holy, and just, and we are not. We are His people, and we serve at His pleasure. We have to be transformed — not somebody else. If we will give our hearts to the Lord without reservation, God will move heaven and earth for His people. Our Bible is full of those stories!
The glorious truth is that God has begun to awaken us, not to be angry, or violent, or political, but to be God’s people. We have the privilege of choosing leaders, but our assignment transcends that. When it doesn’t go the way we want it to, God tells us to pray and trust Him with the outcome. We don’t have to be frightened, or threatened, or uncertain. The One who watches over us doesn’t slumber or sleep.
How to move forward out of resentment
So, let’s pray and tell God about our bitterness, our frustration, and our resentment — all that is troubling us. Forgiveness is not a declaration that there was no injustice done. When we choose to release our anger and resentment, to forgive — we are set free from the circumstance. We are then empowered to move on with our assignment. Let’s resolve, on a daily basis, to pray for those who are in authority over us. I pray God uses the new administration to forward the cause of the Kingdom of Christ. And if they choose not to do that, I trust God to sort it out.
Next, we need to make sure that we are for God, and that we aren’t tolerating anything in our lives that makes us vulnerable in a wrestling match with evil. We’ll never have an argument so powerful that we’ll convince God to side with us in hatred, bitterness, resentment, or anger. We can’t afford to indulge it in the days ahead. We need to establish a solid path forward because the shaking is not over. God is the One who secures our future. We need His firm foundation to stand on, because the trouble ahead is going to be even greater than what we’ve experienced.
I believe we stand on a precipice. In the season ahead, we are going to see one of the greatest moves of the Spirit of God the world has ever known. At the same time, we will also see one of the greatest expressions of darkness. We have to be certain we know who our Savior is. We have to help one another stand firm in our faith. We have to understand that being righteous in God’s sight is more important to us than our political affiliation, or any other single characteristic about our lives.
Jesus is the source of eternal salvation for each person, and He is the only hope for our nation. The truth is that we’ve been reluctant to say that Jesus is the way, and the truth, and the life. We didn’t want to create friction, or to annoy anybody. We understood that if we were too outspoken, or too adamant in our enthusiasm for Jesus, that there could be repercussions. But what you believe determines your destiny, and our nation’s future. Don’t apologize for Jesus. Don’t be reluctant to be His advocate. It’s not easy. It takes a bit of courage to identify yourself as a follower of Jesus. I hope you have that in the season ahead, because it’s going to take courage.
Change happens, one person at a time
His children are at the center of His purposes on the earth. It’s important for us to talk about Jesus and the difference He’s made in our lives, and to help people into the Kingdom.
Do you know there will be good people in hell? I don’t say that to be flippant. In hell, there will be kind people and generous people. There will be people who helped others. Being kind, generous, and helpful are not the criteria for eternal life. Going to heaven has to do with your relationship with a person, and his name is Jesus of Nazareth. He is the only One who can heal our nation, and it happens one person at a time.
As we begin this year, I’m excited. I feel like we’ve turned the page on a new beginning. People I worship with today are more invested, more awake, more aware, and more enthusiastic about the Kingdom of God than the people I worshiped with a year ago. I’m grateful for a season where we can humbly say to the Lord, “We trust you! Let the people of God be awakened from their slumber, be roused from their sleep, and may the distractions be set aside so we can do Your work in our generation. Let the awakening continue! In the name of Jesus, let the awakening continue!”
Allen Jackson is senior pastor of World Outreach Church, a congregation of 15,000, and founder of Allen Jackson Ministries, which broadcasts his biblical messages across the world on TV, radio, and the internet. His latest book, God Bless America Again, released October 1.