On inauguration day four years ago, I was getting ready to preach a sermon. But no, it wasn’t in my home pulpit at the First Baptist Church of Dallas. It was at the historic St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington, D.C. with President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence, just before their inauguration.
On that day, I said clearly and unequivocally that God had raised up a builder to help meet our nation’s challenges. That probably does not surprise you.
But what might surprise you is, if I had been invited to preach a sermon today to President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris, I would have been able to stand in that pulpit and preach the very same truths from God’s unchanging Word.
Back in January of 2017, I said: “The challenges facing our nation are so great that it will take more than natural ability to meet them. We need God’s supernatural power.
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The good news is that the same God who empowered Nehemiah nearly 2500 years ago is available to every one of us today who is willing to humble himself and ask for His help.”
This holds true yesterday, today, and forever. God can help us in the midst of our troubles.
There is one thing we know for certain about politics—there will always be troubles.
Everything we fix breaks back down. Every problem we solve crops back up. Every obstacle we cross leads to more.
That’s just life in a broken, sinful world. Politics has aptly been called ‘The Science of Muddling Through.’ We just do the best we can with what we’ve got.
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We faced many challenges that seemed insurmountable in 2017. And now 2017 seems like a lifetime ago.
We are nearly a year into a global pandemic that rages on.
We have experienced tremendous political and social unrest.
Many people are hurting economically and have lost their jobs.
No amount of human wisdom can solve these problems. We need to call on God.
If President Biden and Vice President Harris humble themselves and ask for God’s help, Scripture tells us He will answer.
“God is no respecter of persons,” the Bible says (Acts 10:34). He doesn’t see “R” or “D” next to your name when you pray to Him. He looks for a willing, contrite heart.
God says in Psalm 50:15, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble I shall rescue you and you will honor Me.”
As I watch what is happening today, I am not in a pessimistic mood.
God has not been caught by surprise. God remains on His throne, and thankfully, His reign is not in doubt or up for a vote.
The Good News that I preach every Sunday is: while we still have breath in our lungs, it’s never too late for us to repent and turn and be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.
Things may be dark, but the same God who told light to shine out of darkness can do so again, in our nation, our cities, our neighborhoods, and our families—starting with us.
Our nation’s brightest days may yet lie ahead, out beyond the horizon of today’s squabbles and troubles. We don’t get to choose what the challenges are, but we can choose how to meet them.
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We can go it alone, or we can call upon God.
I am praying for America today, as I was four years ago, that we will choose to unite around a shared trust in the King of Kings.
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