I intend to bring a wake-up call and sound an alarm, as I take the trumpet to my lips: How should we be living today?
In a day in which we can watch videos of Christians being beheaded on our cellphones, while cities that have had a Christian presence for almost 2,000 years have been emptied of all believers by radical Muslims, how should we be living?
In a day in which civilian airplanes are being shot out of the sky, murdering a grandfather and his grandkids along with a mom and dad with their little daughter, plus a host of other unsuspecting passengers, how should we be living?
In a day in which the people of Israel find themselves surrounded by terrorists bent on their destruction, and the whole nation mourns as they bury their dead, while images of wounded and dead Palestinian infants fill our TV screens by the hour, how should we be living?
In a day in which sexual anarchy reigns in America, with reality-TV shows celebrating polygamy, polyamory, fornication and nudity, and an MTV star declares that "incest is hot," how should we be living?
In a day in which Democratic leaders plan to run on an aggressive pro-abortion platform, promising to fight for a woman's "right" to a late-term abortion, while we continue to terminate the lives of 1 million babies every year, how should we be living?
In a day in which our president scorns the values on which our nation was founded and proclaims that sexual and romantic desires trump religious freedoms, while the courts overturn the will of the people in state after state, how should we be living?
In a day in which historic Christian denominations have completely capitulated to culture, and prominent Christian leaders choose political correctness over faithfulness to God's Word, how should we be living?
More than 40 years ago, Leonard Ravenhill wrote, "When a nation calls its prime men to battle, homes are broken, weeping sweethearts say their good-byes, businesses are closed, college careers are wrecked, factories are refitted for wartime production, and rationing and discomforts are accepted—all for war. Can we do less for the greatest fight that this world has ever known outside of the cross—this end-time siege on sanity, morality and spirituality?"
What would Ravenhill be saying today? How should we be living?
In the year 2000, in the Jesus Manifesto, I wrote: "The cat is out of the bag. The secret is no longer a secret. Anti-God forces are after the soul of our nation, and if we don't wake up now, if we don't take a stand now, if we don't repent and pray and rise and speak and act now, then instead of this great country being 'the land of the free and the home of the brave', our nation could become 'the land of sleaze and home of the depraved.' We need a revolution!"
That was almost 15 years ago, and things have deteriorated quite rapidly since then. How should we be living?
Even in the best of times, the devil is still on the prowl, lives are still being destroyed, the Name of Jesus is still being blasphemed, and billions of souls still hang in the balance. How then should we be living?
As Paul wrote to the Romans, "knowing the time, it is already the hour for you to wake up from sleep, for now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. The night is nearly over, and the daylight is near, so let us discard the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us walk with decency, as in the daylight: not in carousing and drunkenness; not in sexual impurity and promiscuity; not in quarreling and jealousy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no plans to satisfy the fleshly desires" (Rom. 13:11-14).
The time for slumber and playing games is long past, and the time for complacency is gone.
The harvest is ripe, the needs are overwhelming, and the potential is extraordinary.
The power of God is totally available, and the Lord Jesus is enthroned in power, ready to send, anoint and bless and use.
It is time to wake up, stand up and show up.
Not tomorrow. Not next year. Not somewhere else. But today, this year, where you live, right now.
How should we be living? "For the eyes of Yahweh roam throughout the earth to show Himself strong for those whose hearts are completely His" (2 Chron. 16:9).
Live with such wholehearted devotion that the Lord will show Himself strong on your behalf.
You will never have a regret.
That is how we should be living.
Michael Brown is author of Can You Be Gay and Christian? Responding With Love and Truth to Questions About Homosexuality and host of the nationally syndicated talk radio show The Line of Fire on the Salem Radio Network. He is also president of FIRE School of Ministry and director of the Coalition of Conscience. Follow him at AskDrBrown on Facebook or at @drmichaellbrown on Twitter.