Wednesday, May 28, 2014

GOD BLESS AMERICA

We sing the following, we pray the following, and many Presidents have ended their speeches with the following - God Bless America.

God Bless America, but first, America Bless God. As a nation we desperately need to fulfill 2 Chronicles 7:14. With this challenge comes instruction for Christians nationwide followed by a promised response by God.
  • If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray , and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
This conditional If...Then statement is a national "hearing", "forgiving", and "healing". However, it must start with the individual Christian being "humble", "prayerful", "seeking His face" (not His hands), and "turning from our wicked ways", then it will have a great opportunity to spread like wildfire in the congregations of our churches.

Choosing to look upon God for one's blessing, as an individual and as a nation, also means that you have some level of trust in God. James said it nicely when he stated, Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. (James 1:17). However, unlike the slogan on the American currency - In God We Trust - there have been some whom we can learn from their distrust in God - namely Naaman.

Naaman's story concerning this topic is found in 2 Kings 5. If you have the time pause here and read the the whole chapter. The Pritchard Paraphrase of events is that Naaman's journey to Israel was fraught with many instances of distrust in the Lord's provision of healing for leprosy.
  1. Naaman did not trust the "man of God", Elisha, first thing and went straight to the King of Israel with riches and a letter of recommendation/explanation concerning his disease.
  2. Naaman shows up at Elisha's door with expectations of how to be treated. When he does not trust that "the man of God" knows the will of God, Naaman's healing is delayed.
  3. Naaman goes a step further and begins to compare his home waters with the waters he was instructed to bathe in. This still gets him nowhere as he stammers off into the dust, angry and leprous.
It takes one of his own kind, a soldier, to bring Naaman back to his senses. The officers question how hard it would be to fulfill Elisha's request. Then Naaman baptized himself seven times in the Jordan River and he was cured.  

When Naaman finally got his vision for healing and God's vision for healing synced - which in this case was the use of Elisha and the Jordan River - then Naaman's healing came. For Christians corporately and individually we need to do the same - trust God - "turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face, and the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of His Glory and Grace.". If we Trust In God and America Blesses God then God will Bless America.