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Posts Tagged ‘” generational’

Sorting through a box of photos, I came upon a few that I thought someone close to me might appreciate.   One was a photo of her dad in uniform.  He and I have spoken of the high price paid for freedom in this country.  He has expressed his disappointment that our nation seems to have forgotten that price of freedom.  Before sealing up the envelope with photos, I inserted a brief note to this daughter of an American hero.  My note read something like: I am sad that after all your dad endured for his country, he now sees this nation slipping.

Within a few days, she wrote back.  I was delighted with the quick response… then stunned by her words.  Her note to me read:

In response to your comment about my dad having fought for a nation that is now “slipping,” I find that we have very different political views.  My thoughts, beliefs and convictions are strong, as I know yours are for you.  For that reason, I am asking that we not engage in any kind of political discussion and refrain from making comments to each other so as not to create discord in our family.

In what way is the word “slipping” divisive?  In what way is it “political”?  Forget politics.  We are morally and ethically “slipping.”

I see it personally — every day.  In my vocation of “helper,” I work with people — young and old — who are suffering the consequences of choices that set them on a destructive and painful course.   A long time ago I became aware of something so wrong that it could never be called right.  52 million babies — human lives created and redeemed by God — have been aborted in the U.S. alone since the practice was legalized in 1973.  How could a nation that kills its own children not slip into a deep abyss?

My conscience would not rest.  I was compelled by God’s Word to become involved in Lutherans For Life.  I traveled the country, speaking in schools, congregations, and communities.   Never intending to do so, I became an advocate for those caught in the muck and mire of a “slipping” society: boys and girls stripped of their innocence, mothers grieving aborted children, and fathers regretful of their passivity or angry because they were unable to lead out of harm’s way.   People in other parts of the country weren’t the only ones “slipping.”  People here at home were “slipping,” too.  For this reason, two other moms and I founded the local caring pregnancy center in our community so that we might help warn against danger, equip for healthy choices, and encourage on the difficult journey of life.

I long for a soul-to-soul visit with this special person in my life who was offended by the word “slipping.”   Why?  Because dozens of men and women have shared with me their painful stories of “slipping” away from God into unhealthy relationships, false love, and grief.  At last count, 24 of my friends, relatives, or acquaintances have told me about their abortions.  Most of these women have asked me to “speak up” and to warn others not to “slip” away from God’s good plan into the quicksand of doubt.  I’m convinced that the Holy Spirit used those women to nudge me in a direction never before imagined (by me, anyway).  In 2002, I started a little mentoring ministry called Titus 2 for Life.

So, I would like very much to explain to this dear person in my life what the word “slipping” means to me.  I drafted three letters to her, but my husband cautioned me against sending them.  Although I long for a “soul-to-soul” visit with this woman, I hear the wisdom of my husband’s advice.  For now, this blog will have to suffice.

Reality tells me that this special person in my life represents so many others — in families and congregations — who don’t want to talk or “engage in any kind of . . . discussion” that would cause “discord.”  Oh my!  While people are “slipping” away from all that God desires for them, am I to chat about weather and fashions?

Yes, I am stunned.  But, not so much that I can’t recognize a teachable moment.  God’s Word is divisive.  It divides loved ones and strangers.  His Word divides because it opposes our sinful nature.  His Word opposes worldly opinion.  But, faith in God’s Word compels me to use It in every relationship and all circumstances.  It’s the only thing I can trust because while I am “slipping,” It cannot.

God came to this troubled earth as the Man, Jesus Christ, because we are all “slipping.”  My ancestors, Adam and Eve, chose poorly and, ever since, all human beings have been conceived right onto a slippery slope of sin.  The institutions of marriage, church, and state — designed for our protection — are all “slipping” into chaos.  The God of order does not want us to live in chaos.  And so He offers His Word to us today just as He has to every generation before us.  A divisive Word, yes.  But, also a healing and hope-filled Word.

I pray that this special person in my life and I will one day speak of these things.  But, even if that day never comes, I cannot be stunned into paralysis.   On every day that passes until Jesus comes again, people will be “slipping.”  This isn’t my opinion.  It’s not my politics.  It is, rather, a cold, hard fact.

In the face of this cold, hard fact stands a warm and welcoming Savior.   He’s the One who stretches out His arms to prevent us from slipping and, when we go ahead and slip, He encircles His arms around us to bring us back onto our feet.  He’s the one I really want to talk about with my loved one.   He’s the One she and I — and all of us — need in this battle for hearts and minds and souls.

So please, dear God.  Protect the heart and mind and soul of this special one in my life.  I may be stunned by her words, but she still matters to me.  More importantly, she matters to You.

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