Problems are Opportunities

Image by DonnaGrayson via Flickr

A tsunami in Japan, war in Libya, unrest in the Arab countries, Koran burning in a Florida church… Satan loves to use things like these to spread fear in people’s hearts and create confusion and more strife. It’s not how Jesus sees it or would want us to see it, it’s the complete opposite!

Even though we live far from Japan, iodine tablets are the hot ticket item at US pharmacies, and they sold out in just a few days even in Finland after the reports about the nuclear disaster hit the news. People listen to the media who like to sensationalize every event to the max and end up living in fear. What a great opportunity to tell them that perfect love casts it out! And who offers that but Jesus? And of course there’s another way to put our faith into action – there are numerous respectable ways to be generous and give to organizations that have boots on the ground right there. Gotta love America for giving a tax break for charity! I have a friend as a missionary in Sendai, who asked for prayers, they need aid to reach people, fear to subside and the church to reach people whose hearts are really hard towards God. Go ahead and pray!

When the news about Libya hit, I saw the bombs go off on TV, and thought about the children there. I prayed hard for God to give them his peace. Now I pray that God will never let us become jaded and numb to such images, but that they would prompt us to pray for the people there as well as how we could tell those around us that God is still good and in control. It’s so amazing how our world refuses to believe in God and then turns around blaming Him for the strife that we are in. Yet we are called to love everyone without exception, so this is an excellent opportunity to do just that. Let’s pray for Libya and for God to use this unrest across the Arab world to speak His truth and love to all that come within our reach.

Last but not least, people tend to look at churches like Dove World Outreach Center (what a misleading name!) and pastor Terry Jones that take their religious zeal into new extremes as examples of all Christianity. It seems that they have a preconceived notion that Christianity is evil, but it is based on very few examples compared to the good that the Church does in the world. If you are one of the people suspecting Christianity for doing such evil, please know that true Christians would never do this and condemn the actions of these people completely. So much evil is done in the name of Jesus and God, but if you care to investigate even a bit, you will quickly find that the lives of those committing these acts are not even close to what Jesus has called us. They’ve forgotten love. These “churches” and their actions give us an awesome opportunity to show the true love of Jesus to those that are angered by these actions. What better way to get on a same page with someone angry at Christians than to say, “Oh, I agree with you completely. What they are doing is sick, and they don’t have any clue about what Jesus teaches or wants us to do.” There’s your faith conversation starter right there!

What Satan intends for evil, God uses for good. I hope this gives you both great peace in your own heart as well as some ideas for being Jesus to someone today. Be blessed!

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