I have seen many changes in our world during my lifetime.
Technology in every arena has advanced in unbelievable ways.
Things that once would have been considered science fiction is now commonplace.
Medical discoveries have enabled people to live longer. Life expectancy for men and women has almost doubled since 1900.
Travel that could take days, weeks, even months can now be accomplished in a matter of hours. We can do more, live longer, travel faster and farther.
But in spite of all the advances and progress we have made it has done little to improve the problems we face in our time. The parade of war and rumors of war, terrorism, hunger, poverty, disease, sickness, injustice, pass before us in an endless stream. In the United States we are blessed in so many ways but our problems are many
A new morality where there are no absolutes
Disregard for human life
Babies aborted and sold for body parts
A sex obsessed culture fueled by the media and pornography
Divorce, sexual immorality, and broken families
Human trafficking of adults and children for the purposes of prostitution
Increased racial tension and unrest
One in ten Americans unemployed or underemployed
As many as 50% of Americans living on some type of government assistance
15% or 45,000,000 Americans living in poverty (which includes 1 in every 5 children)
Heroin and methamphetamine and other drug addiction skyrocketing
Violent crime increasing in major U.S. cities
As I thought about the problems we face I was reminded of a verse I recently read in the book of Nehemiah “So now today we are slaves in the land of plenty that You gave our ancestors for their enjoyment! We are slaves here in this good land”. Nehemiah 9:36
Slaves in this good land…
Our present situation is similar to where the people of Israel found themselves so long ago.
God provided amazing blessings for them.
Just as He has for us
Despite such generous provision, they soon forgot about God and began to worship the gods of power, success, wealth, sex and desire,
Just as we have.
Their desires became their masters.
Just as they have for us
They became slaves to their desires
Just as we have.
Jesus warned us about being caught up in the things of this life, and ignoring the important things,
“Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be” Luke 12:34
When we acknowledge God, worship Him as he deserves, He blesses our lives
When we turn away from God, the blessings He has provided become a curse
Politicians, social programs, human wisdom, religion will not solve our problems. Only one thing will set things right
“You may think that the situation is hopeless, but God gives us more grace when we turn away from our own interests. James 4:6 “The Voice”
Nehemiah prays for the people of Israel and reminds God of His promise;
“I ask that You remember Your words to Your servant Moses, even when we did not. You told him, “If you are unfaithful to Me and choose another, then I will send you away and you will live separate from Me—you will live as aliens in strange lands; but if you have a change of heart and return to Me and walk according to My commands, then no matter how far you have gone, even to the places beyond the horizon, I will gather you and bring you to the place of My choosing, where My very name dwells.” Nehemiah 1:8-9
God is not against us. He is in the business of redeeming and restoring. I wrote last week about the story of Naomi in the book of Ruth. How despite her mistakes she did the best thing she could do, she returned home, turned back to her God. And despite her mistakes, God blessed her and restored all she had lost.
The only hope for us and our nation is to do as Naomi did. Return to God, confess and turn away from our sin.
And it is not only the best thing we can do,
It is our only hope…
Sources used for data