People freely share their feelings regarding the “non-essential” status given to churches during the pandemic. But have you considered how God feels when we deem churches “non-essential” while labeling abortion clinics and liquor stores “essential”? Grieved? Angry? Sad? Excited?
Webster’s defines “essential” this way: of utmost importance: BASIC, INDISPENSABLE, NECESSARY (caps are theirs, not mine)
The long-term implications of declaring churches and their life-giving services “non-essential” during a crisis are deeply disturbing—at best. The governors who have done so reveal a “God-is-irrelevant” core value system that will continue to guide them long after the pandemic is a memory. Does that concern you? It deeply, deeply troubles me.
Was closing churches the right call? There are good people on both sides of that debate. However, I’m far more concerned about the grid many governors used for determining what is “essential” and what is not.
Buying screws at Home Depot is essential but seeking God’s mercy together is not.
Cutting the arms and legs off a fetus is essential but the church’s life-giving services are not.
Opening the doors of alcohol stores is essential, while closing the doors of local churches.
In several states marijuana dispensaries are deemed essential while churches are deemed dispensable.
Again, I ask you, how do you think such priorities make God feel? Grieved? Angry? Sad? Excited? Does that fourth option surprise you?
I think God could be feeling all four. If you are an ardent follower of Jesus you may be feeling all four as well.
Grieved by the fact that God’s people help elect leaders (either with their vote or their non-vote) who deem God largely irrelevant to everyday life.
Angry at the reality that God’s people helped elect leaders (either with their vote or their non-vote) who believe cutting the arms and legs off a fetus is more important than the work of His church.
Disappointed that God’s people have allowed the church to be considered non-essential in a crisis– in other words, irrelevant.
But excited because God is still sovereign, all-powerful, faithful and merciful. For Him, this is not a problem but an opportunity.
Many leaders have labeled the church “non-essential” in this crisis. What about the next crisis? The downward trend line here is obvious. Does that unsettle you? What you and I do now, in the power and direction of the Holy Spirit, will make the difference.
GOD is the Issue!
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©2020 Brad Bright