Don’t let the bad news of today get you down
There’s a local paper rolled up in a rubber band
One more sad story’s one more than I can stand
Just once, how I’d like to see the headline say
Not much to print today can’t find nothing bad to say
Nobody robbed a liquor store on the lower part of town
Nobody OD’d, nobody burned a single building down
Nobody fired a shot in anger … nobody had to die in vain
We sure could use a little good news today
– Recording artist Anne Murray
The other night my wife, Bernadette, and I had the privilege of hosting a cookout at our home for 16 journalists and their spouses. After our meal we gathered in our living room and I shared a few thoughts to prepare their minds for what they would encounter the next day while attending the inaugural Pathway Christian Journalism Conference. I started by reading the 97th Psalm as a majestic reminder of God’s power and grandeur. Then I talked about the necessity of Christian journalists using their craft to bring honor and glory to God.
As for current news events, I told them that – as Christians – we had just experienced an awful week. President Obama publicly declared the United States not to be a Christian nation, that it holds to some other type of value system. We got a pretty good idea to which values he was referring after he rescinded the “Mexico City Policy” that forces us to pay taxes that are used to kill unborn babies abroad. Do we really think fueling such barbarism pleases God? It certainly was not the value system to which Founding Father Noah Webster subscribed: “The moral principles and precepts found in the Scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws.”
If that were not enough, the White House in recent days asked Georgetown University, a Catholic institution in our nation’s capital, to cover a symbol of Jesus’ name that was normally displayed over the stage from which Obama was to speak. While the purpose may not have been to elevate Obama over the “Name Above All Names,” it had that result. Americans – and particularly Christians – had better start judging this man by his actions rather than by his eloquent political rhetoric.
For that week, the Georgetown controversy was just the start of a string of bad news for Christians.
Rick Warren, the popular California pastor and author, said he never campaigned against homosexual marriage (transcriptions show he spoke against it from the pulpit) and declined to comment on the Iowa Supreme Court’s decision legalizing homosexual “marriage“ in Iowa, saying to do so was not a part of his “agenda.” Warren’s pronouncement, or lack thereof, came on the heels of a bruising political battle in his state which saw its Supreme Court uphold homosexual marriage, only to have voters overturn it at the ballot box. Warren’s popularity is significant, so his influence is thought to be considerable. The controversy has dismayed the nation’s pro-family movement and the evangelical denomination to which he is affiliated, the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC), the nation’s largest, which has repeatedly expressed its opposition to homosexual “marriage.” The Iowa Supreme Court ruling and Warren made a bad week worse.
Then a Rasmussen poll revealed only 53 percent of Americans think capitalism is better than socialism. Equally disturbing: Of the 53 percent who said capitalism was better, most were over age 40. Our education system (both secondary and post-secondary) and the liberal news media have failed to teach our children the basic economic system that has kept our nation strong, while promoting the dignity of every person (rather than relying on “The Nanny State” for its collectivist tyranny for all). The schools often act as agents of the government, one too willing to take our children off our hands and make them into its image. Too many preoccupied parents are content to let it happen and it is a road leading to destruction.
Now for some good news: King Jesus still reigns and as Christians, we know one day He will physically return and make things right. In the meantime, we have been called by our Lord to be “salt and light.” As we engage the culture in an effort to restrain evil until Christ’s return by evangelizing and making disciples, we should be encouraged.
SBC research shows the most-reached age group coming to Christ is between ages nine and 14. These are the so-called “Millennials” or “Generation Y.” They are what demographers say is the largest generation in the history of our nation. In 2007, there were more babies born than in any year of our nation’s history. Could it be the number of Christians has dropped in the last decade because the generation ahead of the “Millennials,” the so-called “Generation X,” is among the smallest in our nation’s history (there are 14 million less Generation Xers than there are in the previous generation, the “Baby Boomers?”
We have an opportunity to shape this new, behemoth of a generation being born. There is no time to waste. The first “Millennials” have just graduated from college and that in itself presents a significant challenge. The last of the “Millennials” will be born next year. The church must try to change the culture through the power of the Gospel rather than acting like the culture. Our faithfulness to that end along with God’s grace and sovereignty could result in an explosion of Christianity in America. Let us pray it happens.