The only hope for a troubled planet |

The only hope for a troubled planet

Gary Wingo

If you keep up with national and world news, then you know that we live in a very troubled world: terrorists, bombings, child molesters, crazy weather, lost kids, broken hearts, insane news agencies, power-hungry world leaders, our own egos…I could go on and on. How ironic that life proves itself to be an uncertain proposition. While we may feel “safe” here in our beautiful valley, we are burdened by what we see around the globe. Maybe that sounds discouraging. In truth, however, life’s troubles have existed for a long, long time. Only, now that we have mass media, harsh reality is exposed to us at every turn. But never fear- there is hope! Jesus Christ is the personification of God’s power for change. Grace for our troubles, Love for our hearts, and Truth for the uncertainty of Life. That is how Christ through us can change the world. Society often views “religion” as a private issue, but the issue is not privacy. When a person chooses to follow Jesus Christ, His grace and truth transform us inside and moves to the forefront of our existence. Its impossible to attempt to keep such a makeover inside! Faith in Christ is the outward expression of God’s work in us, bringing light, hope, and change to the troubles we’re faced with everyday. When I invite Christ to take control of my life, the Bible tells me I can ask of Him: “Create in me a clean, pure heart, O God, & renew a steadfast spirit within me. Don’t cast me from Your presence or take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation & grant a willing spirit to sustain me.” Psalm 51:10-12.Christians are constantly in a process where the God of the Universe reshapes our very souls with His presence inside us. It’s not philosophies or moral teachings we adhere to. Having God create a new heart in us means we have a personal relationship with God Himself and life-change occurs! The “clean heart” He shapes in us enables us to rid ourselves of debilitating selfishness and find power to make a difference in our world. For the true believer, Jesus Christ actually lives in our hearts. Imagine God’s Son taking up residence in our lives, helping us move along our journey, always working our best, and encouraging us to reach beyond our potential as humans!Fortunately, it gets even better. It stands to reason that if Christ lives in us, that presence works to revolutionize our worlds. Christ in us changes our perspective of everything, including our personal integrity, the health of our families, and how we relate to and treat others. He challenges us to reflect His character: “As God’s chosen people, holy & dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other & forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:12-13.This is the true believer; this is the one who can make a difference on this planet. When we express love, kindness, and forgiveness to all we meet, we truly represent the very person of Jesus Christ. And when those societal forces whine about “Christians living their faith” outwardly, don’t let it get you down. Besides the First Ammendment, we have a divine commission to get in the middle of our cultural woes and bring Jesus Christ right into the fray. We must love one another and show this world the truth of God’s heart for His creation.The best way for Christians to fight for truth on this planet is to have the courage to lay aside our differences, forgive one another in love, and stand together. Show all people who God is: “The Father of all compassion, & the God of all comfort, who comforts us in our troubles so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.” II Corinthians 1:3-4. In order for God’s grace to change this world, we as Christians cannot stick our heads in the sand. We must be willing to publicly stand firm and shout to our culture: “God loves you; His truth is our only hope!” Together we can express God’s heart to this hurting world. If change is what we really want, nothing less will do.Gary Wingo leads a gathering called Seekers Fellowship, meeting Sundays at Colorado Mountain College in Edwards at 6:30 p.m.Vail, Colorado

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