"I fear the day when technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots." —Albert Einstein
In my study I have a giant poster of one of my heroes, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. One of his famous quotes is the following: "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter."
Today, I believe many people are being silenced having reached a breaking point. Because of distraction with electronic gadgets, a reluctance to stay engaged on unpopular issues, plus experiencing what seems like an avalanche of negative developments in our culture, many people are disconnecting or distancing themselves from news. They're feeling disillusioned, discouraged and depressed. I personally battle these very things.
At times what's happening in our nation seems overwhelming. Imagine if you're ready to enroll at college in California and cultural confusion has brought us to the point where a student now checks a box answering the question, "What are you? 1. Male 2. Female 3. Transmale 4. Transwoman 5. Gender queer 6. Different identity." Unbelievable!
The meteoric rise of Donald Trump as a presidential candidate is no coincidence. Scores of people are simply fed up with politicians and their promises that don't translate into policy and effective change. Being told to lower our expectations and accept the new normal in a declining America whose "best days are behind us" infuriates multitudes. Bizarre developments in the news that do not meet with principled opposition at the top have created a void and "the Donald" has stepped up to the plate to say what multitudes think even though he does it in ways that make many uncomfortable.
If you only knew the nights when even my wife, who is my greatest supporter in ministry for almost 40 years, communicates that she has reached her limit with "breaking news" or asks me to please turn down the volume on a program because of annoying shouting and drama. I know it's time to plug in another episode of The Fugitive (we've got the 120 episode set!) or sit out on the deck and relax with some popcorn.
A few days ago I was in the Washington, D.C., area and had a lively conversation with a longtime friend. He related to me that his wife playfully accused him of being a "news junkie" and suggested he turn off the news! Sound familiar?
While the biblical principle of balance and moderation is always in order, are there not seasons where desperate times require desperate measures? Just as birth pangs increase in intensity and frequency until delivery, are there not unique times in history when more is required of us because the pace is quickening and it's imperative as "watchmen on the wall" to remain vigilant? Could we be in just such a time?
There are two things in life over which we have no choice. First, the parents we've been given. Second, the generation in which we are born. My appeal is to stay informed in this generation following the counsel: "If you'd do the best with your life, find out what God is doing in your generation and fling yourself into it!"
Suppose you were born in the late 1930s. Reports are drifting your way about rumblings concerning Japan and its saber-rattling toward America. In Germany there is a firebrand on the horizon stirring the people to reclaim Germany's glory. Rumors are circulating about a possible invasion of Poland. Winston Churchill is upbraiding his Prime Minister for declaring "peace in our time" after an ill-advised "deal" with Adolf Hitler. Economic storm warnings are increasing and rumors persist about possible rationing if war was to break out. A fascist dictator is coming to prominence in Italy named Benito Mussolini. Catch the drift of where I'm headed?
I am persuaded that we live in a similar period of history. A perfect storm is developing and this is not some surreal conspiracy theory. It is no exaggeration to say America is at a crossroads ... in a meltdown ... at a tipping point ... experiencing unprecedented changes ... observing our president act like a one-man wrecking crew to bring about his "fundamental transformation of America."
"Close Gitmo." More illegal immigrants. Trust Iran—deny nuclear threat. Abandon Israel. New LGBTQ initiatives. Export unrighteous ideology even to nations opposing it. "God bless Planned Parenthood." "Penitentiary inmates—just young people who made mistakes" [Let 'em vote?]. Tweet affirmation to transgender Jenner. Islamic terrorist activity—"Isolated extremist" ... "workplace violence" ... "random violence." ISIS? "J.V. team." "Islam is a religion of peace." No federal money unless abortion referrals. "Try it—I'll veto it!" More executive orders. Stoking fires of discontent and racial tensions. A debt of $19 trillion—keep spending. Top brass say keep soldiers in Iraq for stability—remove them! Romney and army generals said Russia is our greatest threat—"Nah, it's global warming." Same-sex marriage! Light up the White House! "I can't run again but if I could, I'd win!"
Considering the above, it is not a time to check out of the game but reconsecrate ourselves to prayer and be ready for whatever will unfold in the months ahead. I sense dramatic change coming, judgments and severe economic upheaval. Did you observe the people in Greece in panic because they could not withdraw their money from the banks or ATMs? Returning from Washington, D.C., where I lived for 24 years, you can pick up the whiff of something immanent in the air.
Prophetic leader Gary Kah warn us: "Never before have so many signs of the times manifested simultaneously. Watching the evening news is like witnessing the prophecies of Scripture unfold before our eyes,
An emerging caliphate in the Middle East
An energized Russia—thought to be dead
The global economy teetering on the brink because of insurmountable debt ... ."
"The end of all things is near. Therefore be solemn and sober so you can pray. Above all things, have unfailing love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins" (1 Pet. 4:7-8).
Larry Tomczak is a best-selling author of eight books with 43 years of trusted ministry experience. He is a cultural commentator whose weekly articles appear on sites reaching 26 million monthly. He is a public policy advisor with Liberty Counsel. Connect and view short video commentaries at larrytomczak.com.
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