The Christian Problem – It IS a Slow Fade . . . .

The Christian Problem – It IS a Slow Fade . . .

How America Slid Into Immorality That May Become the Downfall of Our Nation

It’s Time To Stop. It’s Time to Kneel. It’s Time to Rise Up!

We hear it, we read it . . . . Oh, how we “Amen” it . . . We just don’t want to have to live it. We instead justify, ignore, explain it away. When crunch time comes and we are to take action and stop, we instead expound upon why it doesn’t apply to me . . . in this case . . . in this situation . . . or we say were “not doing anything.”  Sometimes we simply draw within our selves and sit in silence as we listen or read God’s truth on a subject . . . “knowing” . . . but . . . knowing, also, that when we leave we’ll do nothing different. We know that we are called to simply stop. Or . . . to simply do something different. But . . . we don’t want to. We have allowed enough of Satan’s deceitful lies into our hearts and minds that we have simply slipped off into “life” and don’t “feel” that bad about it . . . even though . . . we sense, we suppress . . . we know . . . we just need to . . . stop.

Webster Defines Repent: To feel such sorrow for sin or fault as to be disposed to change one’s life for the better; be penitent. Our individual hearts and our personal choices have been the catalyst for great immorality in our country. It is past time to closely examine our way of viewing God, His kingdom, what we are doing here and how we have handled what God gave us to steward. We have been given every moment of life and every relationship we have, every penny and each talent and ability to steward for God. We have allowed Satan to twist it so that we believe we were given all that simply for our own pleasure. In fact, we “deserve” it. We seem to believe we have a “right” to all the American benefits . . . a gift to us somehow, and a gift without the responsibility of stewardship. We have wallowed in our pleasure, after giving up our time for work so as to spend the income and remaining time on . . . our (or our children’s) pleasure. And the cycle of work, pleasure, stress, work, stress, no time, have fun, rest at the lake or in the beautifully decorated home or on vacation, back to work, stress, make sure the kids have it all, stress . . . continued. We have believed that we can throw an hour or two a week at God, say a daily prayer or two, choose to be what we consider moral enough and all is well. Now we are reaping what we have sown. Immorality, loss of jobs as the country can’t sustain the greed, loss of our children’s desire to attend church and understand absolutes, abortion, homosexuality, sex outside of marriage, profanity, violence everywhere . . . need I go on? We are at great risk of losing our freedom to speak of God and His truth . . . we are, in fact, at risk of losing our country.

And yet, many of us still “walk” today as we did yesterday. We avoid looking at truth, choosing rather to play in the “grey,” looking to sustain the American dream. As we watch our country fall apart, we still sit passively, ignoring what we personally are being called by God to do or stop doing . . . because it disrupts our determined goal of living what we have known as the American lifestyle. Our personal choices to live in sensuality and personal “achievement” have been, and are, Satan’s tool to destroy us and the country that God blessed us with.

I purport it is time to address the issues of our hearts, to repent as individuals and as a country and take action toward becoming pure and holy before the Lord. What are you called to Stop Doing or To Do differently? How has God spoken to you? What is it that you ignored? Please, let us turn our hearts and lives and, prayerfully, our country back to Him – the Creator of the Universe – as the Lord and master of our lives . . . and not as our savoir only. Let us live to bring honor to His name.

We know God has called us to purity, to holiness and to service . . . but . . . when we hear the specifics of that call . . . we buck it . . . we justify . . . we surround ourselves with support for what we want to do . . .

When called to just STOP looking at pornography . . . We will not do it. We rather explain – I have to use my computer. I don’t go to  porn sites, well, not often . . . . It’s not pornography – People used to consider this porn, but now, you see that on T.V. Everyone watches this . . . Thaaat is not pornography and I’m not “lusting.” I’m not hurting anyone. (Except the wife who feels “not good enough” and the woman whom God loves that is being used, but after all – she put herself in that situation . . . .) . . . You know . . . just for the moment . . . it’s just fantasy . . . it’s harmless . . . (While the God of Heaven who loves them both watches and His heart aches and breaks for both of them . . . and for you.)

When called to just STOP with the cutting, put down “jokes.” We ask “Why”? Everyone is happy. “We” are laughing. They like to be around me because we laugh all the time. (Well . . . except the ones we are talking about as we laugh . . . and the God of Heaven who loves that one we are hurting.)

When called to just STOP storing up treasures and “barns” for ourselves on this earth. We justify – I have to provide for my family. After all . . . this is the fruit of my labor. This is my house . . . my family . . . my . . . . I only have so much money, space (home), time . . . . Anyway, God wants us to . . . blah, blah, blah (While God cries as His children who ask is turned away and thousands starve and your neighbor is homeless.)

When called to just STOP having sex with someone you are not married to. That is a little too much to ask . . . ‘every’ one I know does it – even “Christians”. Yeah . . . it might not be the best . . . but everyone does it. I don’t think I can give that up and like I said . . . everyone else is doing it. God forgives us . . . He doesn’t expect us to . . . I know . . . but . . . (While God’s heart absolutely breaks as we absolutely destroy the ultimate special gift he gave us . . . and do things we don’t even understand – and couldn’t comprehend if we did – in the spiritual realm.)

When called to STOP spending time and money on a sports activity or favorite hobby so the money can go to something for God’s children or His kingdom . . . The chest is puffed, the chin is dropped and the eyebrow cocked . . . as we (Is it arrogantly?) defend the “right” to whatever it is . . . as we expound on how we can actually use that for God and explain our pure and Godly “reasons” for continuing . . . when deep inside we know it is really for our own pleasure. And sometimes I’m sure it’s okay . . . but what is the percentage of the time we are serving God with it? What, if we are honest is God calling us to do? I mean . . . Well . . . that’s not necessarily called for . . . I already give XY and even Z. God does not ask us to give up everything . . . (Or does He? . . . and the Lord, Who gave up everything, came to earth and died for us waits and watches to see what our priorities truly are.)

When we are called to STOP working at a place that pulls our minds to immorality or calls us into compromise or demands we miss meeting together with the Saints or keeps us from having the time to bless others and serve the Lord . . . We yell back that we have to make a living . . . it’s just a job (where we spend hours and hours of our time), God tells us to provide and take care of our responsibilities . . . (While Gods calls to us saying that He is our provider, that He will care for . . . begging and waiting for us to seek Him first . . . so He can provide all these things . . . .)

When called to STOP watching television, refusing to guard our eye gates and ear gates and set nothing before our eyes that is impure . . . I would never become a homosexual or practice a gay lifestyle . . . I’m not going to commit adultery. I’m not going to rape or kill someone. Why can’t I just watch this show – it’s entertaining. I like it. It’s not impacting me negatively. (While God grieves as He see the darts enter and the slow bleed . . . as spiritual weakness and even death silently begins its invasion.)

When called again to STOP watching television, we dismiss the fact that super bowl ads cost the advertisers millions for a few seconds BECAUSE of the impact an ad can have in a moment . . . we continue to spend hours watching smut and disrespect and anger and killing and violence . . . arrogantly crying – I’M different. No . . . really . . . I get it. I see right through that stuff. It does not affect me . . . I’m serious . . . . blah, blah, blah . . . as we stare at the screen sitting idly and like sheep walk right off the cliff . . . bahhing all the time about . . . about how it didn’t impact me . . . (As God cries while the entire structure of our country becomes completely immoral.)

When called to STOP storing up treasures for ourselves and sell all we have and give it to the poor and follow Jesus . . . . We deem ourselves generous enough. We share. Lots in fact . . . out of our excess and we really are very happy to share our throw offs. What we don’t share is what we want to keep. What we don’t share is what would mean loss for us . . . We refuse to give the best . . . not for someone else . . . . We earned it. It’s ours. They should get their own. What the heck? . . . And . . . besides, we say . . . we go to church every week and sometimes even visit people in the hospital. We are following Jesus . . . you know . . . American style . . . the kind of following that allows most of my time and money to be spent on me and mine. (As the Father in Heaven, giver of every good gift weeps in sorrow and remorse.)

When called to STOP doing myriad types of activities (You know what they are in your life.) . . . We defend our right biblically . . . The Bible doesn’t say I can’t . . . People can’t judge me . . . What is wrong with . . . There is no where that says . . . One ___ (Fill in the blank) doesn’t hurt you . . . . What’s the difference between ____ and ____ (Fill in the blank) (While God in His holiness simply says “Be holy as I am holy” . . . for our own good, as well as my glory.)

When called to STOP avoiding good we know to do . . . we ignore it or often look the other way . . . We don’t look into it, sign the petition, show up at the town hall meeting, stop buying things where the money goes to support what God calls sin. I’m too busy . . . It takes too much time. I don’t know what to do. What difference does one person make . . . I don’t do “that,” but I can’t stop others. Instead we choose to continue to walk where the rest of the sheep (Christian Americans) are walking . . . it seems safe in “my world” (and the Shepard’s voice sounds more and more distant . . . less familiar and . . . more sorrowful) . . . right before we all fall off the cliff

When called to spend hours of my time each week in absolute giving service doing something I wouldn’t choose to do . . . that would require giving up something I want, desire . . . even long to do for myself . . . I choose to ignore it, I avoid thinking about it. I get “busy.” I focus on why the thing I long to do is very important . . . really . . . . (While God watches our struggle, understanding the difficulty in choosing what has more important spiritual implications . . . and knowing the motivation of the final decision was really – our own emotional longing, “logically” justified.)

When called to share my home . . . maybe one of the extra bedrooms or give my car to someone who has none . . . That’s a little extreme – don’t you think . . . seriously. . . or we just quietly walk away, avoid the situation if we need to . . . You know . . . we’ll pray . . . . (While God waits for us to be His hands and feet)

When called to do something I don’t prefer or don’t enjoy or don’t want to spend my time doing or . . . That is not my gift. That is not my talent. That is not my . . . (While God sighs with a heavy heart saying your faith in me can only grow when you depend on My strength . . . . Please, my child, go . . . .)

So, I ask . . . In what “grey” . . . do you play . . .? What black have you been deceived into believing is grey . . . and therefore okay? Is grey okay? Is it pursuing holiness and righteousness and purity or is finding a loophole? Who are you hanging out with? Where do you hang? What have you been willing to tradeoff for the “right” to do? Your soul? God’s name and reputation? Your children’s future physical and spiritual safety? Your country? What else do you know God is calling you to STOP doing that you continue to do? What are you giving up for the Lord? What and/or who are you talking about? Who are you helping and where are you going? What are you spending your time on . . . today? What are you laughing at? What are you looking at? What are you watching? Is it pure? Is it Holy? Is it good for edification? Did it or would it hurt anyone (whether they know or not)? Did you avoid doing what you knew to do?

Who and what do you treasure? It is known to all by how you live . . . what you “Amen.”

If you’re answers don’t line up 100% with God’s word. Then . . . Stop. Stop Now. Stop justifying and Stop indulging. Period.

Stop . . . Stop now or watch your country (and possibly your own soul) slide down the slope into oblivion as you, too late, began to cry out for help.

Do now . . . what will be too late to do then. STOP.
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Philippians 4:8  Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

Ephesians 5:11  Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. For it is shameful even to mention what the disobedient do in secret. (NIV)

I Corinthians 15:33  Do not be deceived: “Evil company corrupts good habits.”

1 Corinthians 10:8  Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell;

Ephesians 5:3  But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people.

Ephesians 5:4-5  Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

Luke 18:22  So when Jesus heard these things, He said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell all that you have and distribute to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.”

Matthew 6:18-34  “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

1 John 3:17-18  If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.

Luke 12:17-22  And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.”’ But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’ “So is he who lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.”

Matthew 6:33  But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

James 4:17  Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.

Genesis 3:7  . . . If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must master it.”

Job 42:5-7  “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You. Therefore I abhor myself, And repent in dust and ashes.”

Joel 2:12-20  (Rend Your Heart) “Even now,” declares the LORD, “return to me with all your heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning.” Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity. Who knows? He may turn and have pity and leave behind a blessing – grain offerings and drink offerings for the LORD your God. Blow the trumpet in Zion, declare a holy fast, call a sacred assembly. Gather the people, consecrate the assembly; bring together the elders, gather the children, those nursing at the breast. Let the bridegroom leave his room and the bride her chamber. Let the priests, who minister before the LORD, weep between the temple porch and the altar. Let them say, “Spare your people, O LORD. Do not make your inheritance an object of scorn, a byword among the nations. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’ “(The LORD’S Answer) Then the LORD will be jealous for his land and take pity on his people.

2Corinthians 7:1  Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse our selves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.

Leviticus 19:2  “Speak to all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy.’
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Lord, Only You are the creator and author of life, the beginning and the end. I praise you, Lord and bless your Name. I thank you that you have blessed me richly by allowing me to live in this great country. I thank you that I was born free and have had opportunities and safety and freedom that so many others will never know. I thank you for the moments of pleasure and fun and the health and wealth that living in America has afforded me. But, I find I am caught in a battle for my life and a battle for my country, one that snuck up on me. I need your help, Lord . . . only You can aid me in this fight against Satan. He is the father of lies and seeks us out to destroy us all, but Lord, I belong to You and I trust You will deliver me from his hand. I thank you for redeeming me. I thank you for sending your son to die for me so that I might be covered in the blood and stand forgiven. I bow before your throne. I thank you that you remove my sin and cast it as far as the east is from the west and remember it no more and that Your mercies are new every day. How great are You, God . . . greater are You who is within me than he who is without. Greater is your strength and power and might than the power of the god of this world. I turn to you, Father, and cry out to you to strengthen me. Strengthen me Lord, to stand against the enemy of my soul, to see his lies and not be trapped by his deceitfulness. Free me now, Father, from any hold he has had in my life. Lord, I ask you to reveal my heart to me and to help me see clearly your perfect will for my life. Direct my steps. Father, go out before me and prepare the way. Please, stand behind me so that I might hear your voice say “This is the way, walk in it.” Direct my thoughts and my steps. Be the Lord and master of my life. Teach me how to be pure and holy as you have called me to be. Show me the path to holiness. I confess that I have not been living in your will when I (confess areas God has revealed to you that are not in His will – areas of sin and/or compromise) Father, make me whole and clean and pure and strong enough to turn away from compromise and sin. Help me to just Stop, to turn it off, turn my eyes away, control my tongue, help and give to others, Stop avoiding what I need to do. Help me to stand, Lord, in You. To be faithful in all ways. I pray now for our country. I repent of my own personal sins and I repent for our country, Lord. I confess and repent for the immorality, selfishness, materialism and greed that has become rampant . . . for denying You and lacking understanding. I confess my own support of so many things, even those I supported unknowingly or by ignoring them. I repent personally and for our country for not continuing to stay vigilant and discerning and standing guard against the devils wiles. I ask and thank you for your forgiveness for myself, my family and my country, by the blood and in the name of Jesus. Have mercy on us lord, please, restore us to a right relationship with you. Walk with me today and guide me, Lord. Blessed be your name in all the earth . . . Oh Holy, God – In Him . . . Amen.
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Practical Application – Listen to “It’s A Slow Fade” by Casting Crowns

(Link is posted on side bar)

List things that you are called to Stop doing __________________________
____________________ ______________________ ___________________
Or Stop Avoiding Doing ______________________ ___________________
List Television Shows you watch ___________________________________
____________________________, _________________________________
____________________________,_________________________________
Did they include: ____scantily clad, nude or partial nudity ____ cussing
____ using Lord’s name in vain ____killing/ murder ____ homosexuality
____adultery ____ fornication ____drug abuse____ lying
cheating ____ gossiping ____selfishness____ partying____
Did you cut down or make fun of anyone this past week? _______________
______________________________________________________________
If so, who? ____________________________Do you need to confess and
apologize to them? _______
Are you having sex outside of marriage? _____
Are you playing around with sexual “activities” claiming they are okay because
it’s not intercourse (yet)? _____
Are you tempted at your place of employment to compromise your commitment
to God? _____ Your integrity _____ Your morals_____
Who are you hanging out with that you need to cut loose? ________________
____________________, ____________________, _____________________
Where do you go or spend time (to do no matter what – no justification allowed)
that compromises who God called you to be? ___________________________
________________________________________________________________
Do you need to get a different job? _______ If so, what are you going to do
about it and when? ________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________
Pray and ask God to give you understanding about what storing up treasures for
yourself on earth really means. Are you doing this? _________
Are you denying help to someone who needs something that you have and could
help them with, but don’t’ want to? _____ Is there anything you need to do
differently in that area? If so, what ____________________________________
_________________________________________________________________
What have you been doing that is “grey?” and need to stop _________________
List what you have been justifying in the areas you need to address ___________
_________________________________________________________________
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What else is there that you are being called to STOP or to Stop avoiding doing?
_________________________________________________________________
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Write a letter (or prayer) to God about what you need to talk with Him about:
_________________________________________________________________
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*Scriptures used are from the NKJV unless otherwise noted.

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