Last night, as I watched the annual ‘State of the Union’ address, I was energized and filled with hope, knowing that God is at work and our prayer – coupled with righteous action as salt and light - can make an enormous difference. I’m also reminded ‘that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men, Gives it to whomever He will, And sets over it the lowest of men (Daniel 4:17).’
I believe that God is moving and the potential for great renewal is available. However, we must answer the question posed by the President last night in his address, ‘What will we do with this moment? How will we be remembered?’
My appeal is in solidarity and unity with the appeal of the President. Let us ‘CHOOSE GREATNESS.’ We serve a ‘GREAT GOD,’ let us be a ‘GREAT PEOPLE.’ As Americans, yes; in our policy, yes; with civility, yes; in our care for others and our integrity among the nations of the world, yes; but MOST OF ALL, as people of God with Kingdom focus, let us CHOOSE GREATNESS.
1. Defend the defenseless.
“You’re here to defend the defenseless…your job is to stand up for the powerless, and prosecute all those who exploit them.”
Psalm 82:3-4, The Message
Choosing greatness means that we choose to defend the defenseless. Jesus’ words and life exemplified the defense and inclusion of the ‘least of these.’ His gospel was to the margins and its scope was expansive in the most unlikely of ways. We too, must be passionate in defending the defenseless and standing up for those who cannot stand up for themselves.
There are none more defenseless than children – born and unborn. As Kingdom citizens, we must speak up and act for their protection and defense. Listen to the President’s remarks,
This is historic for our nation and WE MUST CHAMPION IT to choose greatness. Let your voice be heard! Contact your local and national leaders. Let them know YOU EXPECT ‘legislation to prohibit the late-term abortion of children who can feel pain in the mother’s womb.’
2. Fight for Redemption
“I have blotted out your transgressions like a cloud and your sins like mist; return to me, for I have redeemed you.”
Is 44:22, The Message
Redemption is the heart of the gospel, and through it, God offers us His new mercies every morning. As followers of Jesus, we must fight for the redemption of others – seeking to save, rescue, restore, and offer another chance. I’m thrilled to see that powerful truth of Scripture echoed in the State of the Union address and backed up by legislation like the First Step Act – the most significant criminal justice legislation in years.
We must continue to actively work to reform our prison system and ‘the disparities and unfairness that can exist in criminal sentencing.’ As President Trump said, ‘America is a nation that believes in redemption.’ Let us fight for second chances and look for ways to extend grace to those who experience transformation.
3. Rise up to Serve
“If you want to be great, you must be the servant of all the others. And if you want to be first, you must be the slave of the rest. The Son of Man did not come to be a slave master, but a slave who will give his life to rescue many people.”
Matt 20:26-28, The Message
Greatness begins with service. A primary theme of the President’s State of the Union address was the significance of service. The many heroes highlighted showcased the American ideal of service and sacrifice.
In his address, President Trump challenged the American people.
As Kingdom citizens, we must rise up to serve. Choosing greatness means that we will volunteer to be the answer to the questions of our day. We will embrace the call to serve where we are with what we have, and thereby live out the gospel of Jesus in our world.
Heroes are heroes because they rescue, save, defend, protect, and sacrifice to save. Now, it’s OUR TIME, as residents of the great nation – and citizens of Heaven – to join God’s work in bringing renewal and reconciliation to our land.
‘WHAT WILL WE DO WITH THIS MOMENT??” “HOW WILL WE HANDLE THESE OPPORTUNITIES?” These questions asked by our President have significant Kingdom implications. Let us ‘go forward together,’ and rise to the occasion.