There's a thought that I've been wrestling with for about a decade. It comes to mind and I ponder it for a little while, then file it neatly away in my mind under the category, "Underlying Principles That I 'll Have to Think About Later." That mental file folder can get crowded sometimes.
Maybe you've experienced the same, in that you've noticed a familiar pattern that can be barely discerned in differing circumstances which are seemingly unrelated. In this case, I have come to understand that politics, scuba diving, marriage, and spirituality all have a common principle at work, threading through them.
If you're a diver you may already know what I'm about to say. You can stop here and pray that you have the strength to fight drift. If you're not a diver, I'll give you an image to consider.
About 25 years ago, I was dating a guy who was a certified Dive Master. Scuba diving, in my opinion, is like a venereal disease: it spreads to whomever you are sleeping with. In case it's not obvious to you, I had not yet been saved at the time.
If I wanted to get a closer look at something, I had to swim against the powerful current and the effort was exhausting. That extra look took commitment on my part. If I didn't work to stay focused on that point of fascination, I would be pulled away from it by forces I couldn't see. If I was lucky, I could find a rock on which to anchor myself as I inspected whatever object by which I was fascinated, and that made resisting the current much easier. The rock helped me resist the current's pull.
Does that make sense? Let's talk about this same principle in politics.
Without saying left, right, or center and making this about political parties (none of which are bastions of morality, in my opinion) let's talk about Godly and ungodly.
I admit there was never a time when we were good and holy in America. We started out by moving to a land rich with opportunity, brought disease that was unknown to a people and which devastated their population. European technology gave us an advantage in physical conflict, and Fire Water gave us further advantage in social conflict. The native peoples were destroyed.
Yes, many of us Europeans came here to escape tyranny and oppression. But don't think for a moment that those same demons weren't castaways on every ship that arrived on these golden shores. The country was founded by Freemasons, and those guys really, really suck.
But, even with all that as our history, there was a time when 8 million children worldwide didn't go missing per year. There was a time when nobody would dare say that pedophilia was just another form of love. There was a time killing a baby just moments before/after it was born was considered murder. There was a time when...well, you get the idea. Evil used to be in the shadows because nobody dared let it come to light. Moral outrage was something that actually aligned with the moral guidance that is presented in the Bible, as opposed to something that is dictated by the ACLU.
At the moment we declared our independence from the monarchy of our British cousins, we were focused on a point in the reef wall I described above. We had been swimming against a current and found a rock to hold onto.
But a lot of us let go of the rock. And there was a current that brought us along the path of our history. It seemed like we were still on the same reef, or path, but in truth we're a very long way from that point at which we were first anchored. The "progress" we felt we made wasn't always good.
This is the invisible current I'm talking about, that pulls us farther and farther away from what we should be focused on. Worse yet is that this current is targeting our children, and us parents are focused on paying the mortgage, getting children into prestigious colleges, taking them to football practice or ballet classes, or just trying to make it through the day. Most of us are not resisting the current that is pulling us down the reef of moral decline. We're exhausted, and the current is working against us.
Most of us have heard about that Rock. We believe there's a Rock. We sing songs about that Rock for an hour on Sunday, and some guy tells us the Rock really loves us, so it seems like we're OK.
But we're not actually holding on to that Rock and resisting the current.
Marriage has the same principle of drift in it. You've heard it, right? People "drift apart." If we're not actively working at growing closer to our spouse, there are forces at work that pull us away from our spouse. Fast cars, old girlfriends, the lure of a responsibility-free life, the desire for more spending money and freedom. Yes, I'm talking to you, Norm. Have you contacted the kids you abandoned lately, from your new life in Switzerland? Have you told them that you value them, love them, and are proud of them? Have you told them that you miss them? Who am I kidding? You never said that while you were here. And yes, I'm angry about that. You were supposed to represent the rock in their lives and instead you became part of the destructive current.
But I digress.
Spirituality, by which I mean relationship with the One True and Living God, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, is also subject to the same principle of drift.
If we are not actively resisting the current of evil influences in daily life, the current is working against us. If you think that today's movies, advertising, computer games, clothing, educational system, food and beverage choices, political commentaries, news casts, political protests, health initiatives, etc. are not evil, then all I can conclude is that you're not paying attention.
Do you think I'm wrong? So be it. You'll find out when Jesus comes for his Bride, and you're standing there saying you went to church on Easter and Christmas, so why do you have to endure the Tribulation that is described in horrific detail among 20 chapters in the book of Revelation.
Wake up. Look closely at how brainwashed people around you seem to be, believing that any government led by mankind really has our well-being as its main concern. I'm not saying there are no good politicians. I know some who are pretty stand-up guys and are doing the very best they can on a local level to improve the lives of the members of their community.
I'm saying there are forces at work against us, and we can't even see them. We're not actively resisting, and the current they generate is trying to pull us away from the Rock we should be holding on to.
1 Thess 5:17-22
17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus. 19 Do not quench the Spirit, 20 do not utterly reject prophecies, 21 but examine everything; hold firmly to that which is good, 22 abstain from every form of evil.
1My soul waits in silence for God alone; From Him comes my salvation.
2He alone is my rock and my salvation, My stronghold; I will not be greatly shaken.
You are either actively hold on to, or being pulled away from, God every day. Remember that.