Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a reproach to any people.
I recently had a conversation with a young person who was on the fence about voting in this year’s election. He noted his distrust of the Electoral College and disappointment in the political system and politicians in general. In his opinion, they all seem to do what they want to do and tell us what they think we want to hear. I could not help but agree as I too recognize that our political system could use a lot of improvement.
Too often we see dishonor of their oaths of office, corruption, political jockeying for more and more power and a blatant disregard of “the will of the people”. The last 12 years, particularly on a national scale, has revealed some of the darkest places of the human heart, especially in pursuit of power, and 2020 has seemingly been the all time low. The politicizing of our response to Covid 19, the resurgence of racial tensions, and the sheer nastiness of this election, tempts me also to feel that it is hopeless; so why even bother. Why vote, why speak up, why even try to stand for what is right? Afterall, this world is ‘going to hell in a handbasket’ as it is said.
Shortly after the conversation, I heard the Holy Spirit whisper, “it is righteousness that exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” This scripture, found in Proverbs 14:34 changed my perspective. If we as Christians fail to show up, in the darkness, then what hope is there? Our collective righteousness lifts up our world and counters the collective evil and sin that is bringing it down. The only way that people see the light, is it shines in darkness.
Jesus put it this way in Matt 5:14-16, “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do people light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.”
Despite the darkness, lets choose to be the light. For indeed, it is righteousness that exalts a nation.
Published on Jan 20 @ 3:55 AM EDT
Thank you Minister Botts for reminding me that I have to be light in darkness.
Posted on Wed, Jan 20, 2021 @ 6:46 AM CST
I couldn't agree with you more Minister Botts. We are so tired of the doom and gloom. But we have to keep pressing on. Those that came before us I'm sure that grew tired and wanted to give up. But yet they still persevered. As Christians we must keep the light shining brightly. There is always hope because Jesus Christ lives in our hearts. So we continue to lift up our heads, do the right thing and keep moving. Thank you for that word. Be Blessed.
Posted on Thu, Jan 21, 2021 @ 2:44 PM CST
Author: L.B. Cowman
“Be still and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”
When we have doubts or are facing difficulties, when others suggest courses of action that are conflicting, when caution dictates one approach but faith another, we should be still. We should quiet each intruding person, calm ourselves in the sacred stillness of God’s presence, study His Word for guidance, and with true devotion focus our attention on Him.
We should lift our nature into the pure light radiating from His face, having an eagerness to know only what God our Lord will determine for us. Soon God will reveal, by His secret counsel, a distinct and unmistakable sense of His direction. It is unwise for a new believer to depend on this approach alone. He should wait for circumstances to also confirm what God is revealing. Yet Christians who have had many experiences in their walk with Him know the great value of the secret counsel of the Lord as a means of discerning His will.
Are you uncertain about which direction you should go? Take your question to God and receive guidance from either the light of His smile or the cloud of His refusal. You must get alone with Him, where the lights and the darkness of this world cannot interfere and where the opinions of others cannot reach you. You must also have the courage to wait in silent expectation, even when everyone around you is insisting on an immediate decision or action. If you will do these things, the will of God will become clear to you. And you will have a deeper concept of who He is, having more insight into His nature and His heart of love. All this will be your unsurpassed gift. It will be a heavenly experience, a precious eternal privilege, and the rich reward for the long hours of waiting. DAVID
Keep still! When trouble is brewing, keep still! When slander is getting on its legs, keep still! When your feelings are hurt, keep still till you recover from your excitement at any rate! Things look different through an unagitated eye. In a commotion once I wrote a letter and sent it and wished I had not. In my later years I had another commotion and wrote another long letter; my life had rubbed a little sense into me, and I kept that letter in my pocket until I could look it over without agitation, and without tears, and I was glad I did—less and less it seemed necessary to send it. I was not sure it would do any harm, but in my doubtfulness, I learned reticence, and eventually it was destroyed. Time works wonders!
Wait till you can speak calmly and then perhaps you will not need to speak. Silence is the most powerful thing conceivable, sometimes. It is strength in its grandeur; it is like a regiment ordered to stand still in the mad fury of battle. To plunge in were twice as easy. Nothing is lost by learning to keep still. HANNAH WHITALL SMITH
I do not believe we have even begun to understand the wonderful power there is in being still. We are in such a hurry, always doing, that we are in danger of not allowing God the opportunity to work. You may be sure that God will never say to us, “Stand still,” “Sit still,” or “Be still,” unless He is going to do something. This is our problem regarding the Christian life: we want to do something to be Christians, instead of allowing Him to work in us. Think of how still you stand when your picture is being taken, as the photographer captures your likeness on film. God has one eternal purpose for us: that we should be “conformed to the image of his Son” (Romans 8:29 KJV). But in order for that to happen, we must stand still. We hear so much today about being active, but maybe we need to learn what it means to be quiet. Perhaps we simply need to learn to be still and watch God work out the details that challenged us so greatly and caused us so much distress. You will find that He works wonders if we can just still our hearts and sit before Him until He speaks.
Oh Lord, You know my heart better than I know it myself. You know my struggles and You hold each hope and fear in Your caring hands. Teach me, LORD, to be still and to know that You are God. I trust in You alone. In Jesus’ Name I pray. Amen.
An excerpt from the book: "Streams in the Desert: Morning and Evening"
Published on Jan 31 @ 12:46 AM EDT