The General Superintendent
speaks: A wake-up call
The tragic attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon have
caused millions of Americans to reexamine priorities and take inventory
of their spiritual lives. Many have turned to the church for answers.
Congregations have reported record attendance and political leaders
have openly called citizens to prayer. Some believe the attacks are
Gods judgment for Americas sin. But, let me suggest that
God has a much larger perspective.
this is a time to repent of our sins as individuals and as a nation.
We must cry out to God for mercy according to 2 Chronicles 7:14: "If
my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray
and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from
heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land" (NIV).
But we should also remember that the Bible focuses much more on Gods
efforts to save the lost than it dwells on the judgment of the wicked.
This is an ideal time to share Christs love with friends and family
members. The Holy Spirit is preparing their hearts to receive salvation.
Many backsliders are searching for a path back to Jesus. Let me encourage
you to show them the way to eternal life.
God desires to unleash His mercy through the church and individuals
like you and me. The church cannot proceed with a business-as-usual
attitude. We cannot conduct church services that are so programmed that
theyre absent of the Spirits power. The lives of men and
women are at stake. One wonders how many of those working in the World
Trade Center and in the Pentagon were in church the Sunday before the
attack, but did not hear an adequate presentation of the gospel. How
many were not given an opportunity to repent of their sins and accept
Christ at an altar? How many did not experience the presence and power
of the Holy Spirit?
Pray for our
president and the men and women who serve with him in all branches
of government. Pray that God would give wisdom.
Pray for a spiritual
awakening for our nation.
Pray for those
who are being called to serve in our Armed Forces.
Pray for those
who have suffered the loss of loved ones in New York, Washington,
D.C., and Pennsylvania, and for those who are suffering from physical
harm such as burns and broken bones.
Pray for Gods
mercy, forgiveness and favor.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we carry a great responsibility. God
says the blood of the lost will be required at the hand of the righteous
who fail to warn them of their wickedness (Ezekiel 3:17-19). We must
regain our awareness of eternity. Only then will we do whatever we can
to rescue people from eternal death, even those who consider us their
Were guilty at times of making ministry too complicated. As we
live out the truth, walk in the power of the Holy Spirit and demonstrate
the compassion of Christ, people will be drawn to Jesus. This is a season
of opportunity to offer comfort to those who are hurting, not only from
the pain of this recent loss, but also to those who are dissatisfied
with a self-serving life. Gods wake-up call is an invitation to
lay aside the entanglements of sin and find true freedom and personal
fulfillment as "one nation under God."
Our nations leaders have identified this as a war like no other
in our history. Israel in the Old Testament also confronted enemies
they could not defeat. But when they called upon God and threw themselves
on His mercy, He delivered them. We as a nation and as a church must
say, "Lord, we are not adequate to thwart this enemy. We need Your
wisdom, Your help, Your defense." Let us acknowledge that its
not by our might or power or cleverness or organization; its by
Gods Spirit that we will be victorious.
Thomas E. Trask