On Sunday we took a moment to remember and reflect on the 15 year anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks that rocked the United States in 2001. The destruction and damage from that event is still, to this day, having an affect.
Calling Out to God
On that day and through several weeks that followed, America as a nation cried out to God. No matter where you went in the United States – even State and Federal signs read: Pray for America. God Bless America. God Save America.
This phenomena is often cited in the worn cliche: “There are no Atheists in Foxholes”. In Sunday’s Sermon, Pastor Ed Kreiner talks about the fact that God utilizes crisis in our lives and the lives of all mankind to point us towards heaven. That is to say, God does not cause bad things to happen to us. But he will utilize bad scenarios as a method for us to call upon His name for His intervention in our lives.
Our calling out to God must be done “In Truth.” That is to say, when we call upon God – we must be sincere. God is not a genie with a get out of jail free card. Often times, we utilize Him to this end. But God wants us to rely upon Him and to fall upon Him in our times of need.
The New Pulpit
Within a short time period, the American Society erected new pulpits. These were not religious pulpits – though they did affect our religious tenor. No, these pulpits were manned by political leaders, teachers, military spokesmen and women, and the list goes on. Their message was distinct: We Can Rebuild. We Can Recover. As a quick note: there is nothing wrong with this message; however, when we say we can do this “on our own,” then we cross into a prideful stance. And instead of God helping us, He steps back and let’s us do what we can for ourselves.
Going to The Next Level
The first level each of us has to hit is to simply cry out to God. This is the crux of Salvation. We cannot be redeemed by our own efforts, our own good deeds. Instead, we must have an outside intervention that reaches in and sanctifies us.
As a church, we can help others go to the next level – even if that is the first level – by simply leading them to the next level. This can be so simple as just asking someone if you can pray with them in regards to the issue they just told you about.
Many small steps, small introductions will eventually lead (with the Holy Spirit’s help) to a Salvation experience. A time when a person cries out to God saying: “Almighty God, I recognize that I’ve fallen short of perfection. I recognize that though I try and try, I do not do the good that I wish I would. Instead, Almighty God, I fail. I sin. I fall short. Today, I ask you to intervene on my behalf. Jesus Christ, I ask you to redeem me. I ask you to live in my heart and make me a new creation. And I pledge, in truth, to live my life for you. Amen”