Our trip to Focal Point in San Marcos has gotten off to a great start. We had 4 great lessons on Sunday and are looking forward to 9 lessons each day this week from some great preachers and elders in the brotherhood. The University church of Christ in San Marcos is hosting the event and not only is there no charge for attending, but the church is providing lunch, drinks and snacks each day. Several brethren were to be up all night smoking brisket for our lunch on Monday! Nothing better than being well fed spiritually and physically!
Last night’s ‘keynote’ speaker was Melvin Otey. Brother Otey is on the faculty of the Faulkner University Law School. In addition to his teaching and legal work, he also does 20-30 gospel meetings a year and I certainly hope we can have him come to Jersey Village in the future. Not only is Melvin a brilliant Biblical scholar and great preacher, but he’s also originally from St. Louis and a big Cardinal baseball fan. Say no more…
Brother Otey’s lesson last night was taken from 1 Chronicles 12:32, where the Bible speaks of “the sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times” (NKJV). Melvin’s point was that Christians today also need an understanding of the times that we live in. We must recognize that most of our major institutions (education, entertainment, political) have been taken over by secular humanists. Therefore, Christians must realize the challenges we face in not only staying faithful in a climate of immorality, but we must also understand how worldly people think so that we can better relate to the lost when we try to share with them the gospel of Jesus.
Understanding the times is critical for all of God’s people, but as we approach Mother’s Day this Sunday, I can’t think of a group of people who need to be more aware of the times than moms. Raising children to be faithful servants of the Lord is not only the most important job a parent has, but also the most difficult one. And we must face a difficult truth: The culture is going to be our enemy in this endeavor. Few, if any, outside of the church are going to help our children get to heaven. That’s why it is absolutely vital that Christian parents make the Lord and His church their top priority and not just for themselves, but for their children also.
The most recent issue of Think Magazine has an article that underscores just how difficult a parent’s job has become. Brad Harrub interviewed Josh McDowell, the well-known author, evangelist and apologist about the effects of pornography in our culture. McDowell conducted a survey of 3000 people regarding pornography and he found an absolutely amazing statistic that shows just how the humanist culture has infiltrated the education of America’s young people. According to his survey, of those 18-29 years old, 56% viewed ‘not recycling’ as morally wrong but only 32% viewed ‘pornography’ as morally wrong. That is unbelievable to me, but sadly, not all that surprising.
Of course, surveys like this only serve to expose the tip of the iceberg and most of us already know that. Yet, whining about our culture doesn’t do us any good, nor does sticking our head in the sand. Instead we must understand where society is and then do our best to protect our children while at the same time remaining relevant with the message of the gospel. Paul wrote, “See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is” (Ephesians 5:15-17).
As we approach Mother’s Day, may God bless us all, but especially our moms, to have the wisdom to understand the times and protect ourselves and our children from the evil of the day. Fortunately, while motherhood is no walk in the park, God does promise to walk with moms if they are willing to hold tight to His hand. Moms, for the sake and souls of your children, please hang on tight.