Friday, April 18, 2014

What we can do to help the Middle East

Christians are called to be politically active by praying for international peace and administrative wisdom

Turn on any news channel or pick up any newspaper, and headlines are sure to outline the grim political landscape of our country and our world.

Tension continues to rise as leading bureaucratic figures scramble to find the best solution to the crisis in Syria. Pressure in the Middle East has left the region fragmented.

Radical Muslim faith is surging. Fellow brothers and sisters in Christ face harrowing persecution. Millions have been displaced from their homes as religious and political powers war for sovereignty and fame.

And then we throw the financial and political issues of the United States into the mix. Our nation faces an inconceivable debt that, according to the Washington Post, has reached more than $16 trillion and is well on the way to breaking the debt ceiling. Our leaders are torn between Syrian involvement or inaction, and reports of war stream in daily.
It is nothing short of overwhelming.

As a result, I am finding it increasingly difficult to be a joy-filled Christian in a world saturated with conflict and pain. Sitting in Lynchburg, Va., the list of helpful actions we can take to improve the innumerable global afflictions seems trivial and inconsequential.

If there is one truth I have recently discovered while praying through my grief for the tragedies occurring worldwide, however, it is that Christians have a prominent role to play in current affairs. The greatest lie we can believe is that our actions are not enough, that we cannot be effective where we are.

We may not be on the front lines, but that does not mean that we belong on the sidelines.

Though I would generally be the first to shy away from political discussions, I am learning that being attentive to the needs of people around the world does not require a degree in geopolitics or economics.

The situations are complex, and the answers are not easy, but Christians bear a responsibility to intentionally seek truth and weigh the measures of the world against a biblical worldview.

Whether you support American intercession in the Middle East or not, we are to be interceding in prayer.

As the upcoming generation of leaders, each one of us is in the ideal position to influence change. So whether we voice our opinions to large crowds or to our roommates, let us be knowledgeable about what is happening around the world. Read the headlines, follow the news, and take every opportunity to graciously and effectively direct conversations toward truth.

We ought to make use of the incredible community of people we are so blessed to have here at Liberty University. Take the opportunity to learn from those who are like-minded as well as those with dissimilar stances.

And when the pain of the world inevitably begins to overburden and distress, remember that our hope is in Christ alone. We need to pray through Ephesians 6, put on our armor, and faithfully live out our callings as ambassadors to the world.

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