Saturday, August 23, 2014

Do You Grieve?

             “. . . Then the Lord called to the man clothed in linen . . . and said to him, “Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it.”
            As [Ezekiel] listened, he said to the [other men], “Follow him throughout the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion. . . . but do not touch anyone who has the mark. . . .”  (Ezekiel 9:3-6) 
            Do you grieve over the condition of our country?  Over the ways people are trying to erase all signs of God, to make Him illegal, to change morality into fifty shades of gray instead of biblical black-and-white?  Do you grieve over the lost souls, the condition of godless schools, the broken families, broken vows, broken homes and broken hearts?  (Over the condition of your own heart?)  Are you okay with the changes?  Or indifferent to the immorality and indifference all around us?  Do you dabble in it, just a little bit?  Enjoying a tiny taste of sin here and there?  Do you partake in the degrading, immoral television shows and movies and music and lifestyles?  Because it won’t affect you, of course . . . would it?  Do you grieve?

            God notices our hearts.  If we grieve over immorality or not.  If we have a heart set on righteousness or not. 

            Psalm 14:2:  “The Lord looks down from heaven on the sons of men to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God.”  

            We may not be able to do much to change the way our country is going.  But we can grieve over it.  We can become heart-broken over it, instead of indifferent.  We can intercede in prayer for our country.  We can seek righteousness.   

            “I looked for a man among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found none.  So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign Lord.”  (Ezekiel 22:30-31)

             “Go up and down the streets of Jerusalem, look around and consider, search through her squares.  If you can find but one person who deals honestly and seeks the truth, I will forgive this city.”  (Jeremiah 5:1) 

             “If my people, who are called by my name, will 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.  Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.”  (2 Chronicles 7:14-15)    

             “For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.”  (2 Chronicles 16:9) 

            It might not matter much to the world if we grieve over the condition it’s in, if we live the truth out loud and boldly, never compromise or hide our faith, and if we set our hearts on righteousness and humbling ourselves before God.  But it matters to God.  And it affects how God deals with our country and with us when it’s time to pour out punishment on the wicked.  If we are not grieving the immorality in society (and in our own hearts) and the bold ways society is defying God, we are passively supporting it.   
            Do you grieve?