Monday, April 11, 2016


Friends of Faith:

I am convicted in my faith. And I, like Jesus and His followers, will be convicted (judged and persecuted) because of my faith. Sadly enough I will even be convicted and judged by other believers because of the faith which allows me to “be silent no more.”

If you, like me, find yourself feeling saddened by our nations seemingly Godless views, discouraged by today’s political division, and with a sense of powerless to protect basic human rights then I would encourage you to go see the movie “God’s NOT Dead 2.”

The knowledge alone that a movie with this title is in the theatre gives me hope, and reminds me that I must constantly champion the freedom of speech, the freedom of religion and find a voice in today’s all too secular society for God. The movie proves God’s existence using means other than the Bible and promotes and gives courage to Christians that there is strength in prayer and in the support of a community.
As Christians we must not be silent – we must be convicted in, even persecuted by, and for our faith in God.

“The high priest questioned them, “We gave you strict orders, did we not, to stop teaching in that name? Yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and want to bring this man’s blood upon us.” But Peter and the apostles said in reply, “We must obey God rather than men. The God of our ancestors raised Jesus, though you had him killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him at his right hand as leader and savior to grant Israel repentance and forgiveness of sins. We are witnesses of these things, as is the Holy Spirit whom God has given to those who obey him.” …..So they left the presence of the Sanhedrin, rejoicing that they had been found worthy to suffer dishonor for the sake of the name. Acts 5: 27-41
There are days when I, like Jesus and the main character in God’s NOT dead, Grace Wesley, pray: “God, please don’t forsake me.” There are moments when I hear the truth of the teachings of the Catholic Church challenged and I find myself with the faith to rejoice because I am “suffering dishonor for the sake of the name.” And there are times when I am challenged by some of my closest Christian friends who are either complacent, “stuck” or in denial of the power of Jesus; who believe that standing up for life, marriage, prayer or even the sanctity of Sunday worship time must be politically correct, non judgmental, and is a “freedom of choice.”

But, thankfully, God constantly allows me an awareness that He is in charge. I see the Spirit opening hearts and minds that are willing to take on the challenges of growing deeper in faith, answering His call and saying Yes to His will. I see religious leaders who are reaching out to each other, finding common ground and speaking common truths. And I rejoice when I hear those who openly witness to their faith and ultimately seek to return to the fullness of the Church.

My faith is a relationship with Jesus that gives me the courage to say: “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church. I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen.” Nicene Creed, 4th Century Statement of Belief

And the more I learn and the more as I study, the more convicted I become and unfortunately, just like Christian followers before me, the more dishonored by human judgment I will become. And in those times I will rejoice because I have been chosen to suffer for the sake of His name.
Finally, draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power. Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground. So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all [the] flaming arrows of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Eph 6: 10-17

Am I convicted enough that I am willing to be convicted? Will I stand up for my faith? Can I defend what I believe against the tactics of the devil, even in a court of law?

Lord, I call on your name because I am weak. But because I am weak, I know it is in your power that I will become strong. Give me the courage to stand up and say I am Your follower forever. Give me the strength to stand up and say YOU are the Truth. Give me Hope so that I will “not be afraid.” Dear God, make me strong, make me yours, help me to do Your will, in Your name. Amen.
Is my faith in God’s protection, in God’s power, in His truth, enough to shout to the world: “God’s Not Dead –because His Church is Alive?”

Will my choices be done because of faith in the power of His Way, His Truth and His Life?
May you receive the grace and peace of living in the conviction of Jesus’ hope and help,