Finish the Job!
An army of global producers/film makers gathered in Atlanta, Georgia for the annual 2011 International Christian Visual Media conference (ICVM). Cheering each other on and learning the latest technologies to present 'the good news' to this generation. Praying together cognizant of the fact that this is a 'media driven' generation. Media sets the moral moorings for our society, starting with children and families who frequent the theatre more than church. Josh McDowell, our key note speaker, shared alarming research statistics exposing an "invisible enemy" destroying families and violating our youth/children. The enemy . . . pornography, is rampant in neighbourhoods and prevails in the church.
"Between the pervasiveness of sex on the internet and all the entertainment media available to young people today, we dare not ignore the devastating impact on our kids. We owe our children relevant answers as to why God's plan for relationships and sex protects and provides for their future." states Josh McDowell. Photo from his website: Statistics available https://www.josh.org/wp-content/uploads/BareFacts include:
- 44% of children under age 12 have visited porn sites (likely more since these 2011 stats).
- 2.45 billion people are on the internet (May 26, 2015 report from the International Telecommunication Union is 3.2 billion) and a high percent down load the porn.
- Promise Keepers, a spiritual men's conference, discovered 51% of the attendees 'admitted' they visited a porn site that week. Statistics were equally as shocking for church attenders and clergy.
"Of the 56% of marriages ending in divorce, the number one reason "one person having a sex addiction." Note: as of 2008 Statistics Canada will no longer include marriage statistics because the "traditional definition of family is changing."
Alarmed and left with vexing questions I asked myself . . . who will advocate for our children? If many of our fathers are snared in the porn trap and some of them responsible for bringing porn and the attached demonic strongholds into their homes, how then could they protect their own? If the dad's, whom God intended to be defenders, are unavailable to shield their kids. who will guide the children through the enemy mine fields? What about grandfathers? Could they stand in the gap for the children? Apparently not, the adversary is no respecter of a persons station in life nor age and he has captured many grandfathers imagination/heart.
There's a biblical story of Lois and Eunice, Spiritual mother and grandmother guiding young Timothy. Could grandmas be warriors? Could mothers model holiness enveloping children in safe quilt of prayer? Maybe not. Sadly, a vast number of women wrestle with sexual addiction, 20% in 2011. Mothers and grandmothers are also vulnerable to this debilitating addiction and this rape is happening on our watch!
We weep for our children, and call upon the all powerful name of Jesus, he weeps too. We believe in relentless redemption (check 700 Club Canada host Laura-Lynn Tyler Thompson's book and articles).
I am personally familiar with this violation and identity of those who have been sexually assaulted and exploited. But for the grace of God, where would I be? Certainly not on the mission field! And not giving this testimony . . . Jesus is the answer!
Who will advocate for this generation? Will you speak truth and warn them? each them is no such thing as 'soft core' porn and protect them from a curriculum that may lead in that direction. All porn has a voracious and insatiable appetite it is militant, malignant and an evil, destroying individuals and families. Ultimately porn leads to death, spiritual death. The triumphant truth is that God has a wonderful plan for the life of our young. The power of the Holy Spirit anointing will give boldness to stand against the wiles of the enemy. Porn can morph into a merciless slave driver and bind you with chains of shame. I declare freedom for the addict. Will you respond to Gods call to freedom? To His call to enter your mission field? I am believing for an army of men/women and children with warring swords (God's word) contending and defeating evil. The greatest resource Canada has is God's people empowered by the Holy Spirit!
We believe in the eminent return of our Lord Jesus Christ, our Saviour and rescuer. Jesus, the one who shed his blood for the healing of our soul and the healing of our nation. Jesus, the one who loves the children and who set them at the centre and says that we must become like these innocent ones. Jesus the healer is ready to respond to our cry.
I am convinced that this pandemic of sexual immorality is just one of the many signs . . . perhaps Jesus is on his feet! The trumpet will sound. We may be the threshold generation that ushers in his return! How marvellous is that?
The harvest is great, the labourers few, pray that the Lord of the harvest will send labourers into his harvest (mission field) Math 9:37- 38. Will you add your voice to the shout out for our children? Prayer changes things and prayer changes me and I change things. Together we can expose evil and defeat powers and principalities and spiritual wickedness in high places. Therefore, put on the whole armour of God (starting with the belt of truth) . . . that you may be able to stand your ground in that evil day Eph 6 and lets . . . finish the job!
Abridged 2011 article by Maralee Dawn
Information to educate yourself:
** Google SOGI 123
Will You Accept the Mission?
"I don't want to be here!" wailed the athletic young mom. She gazed into the steel eyes of the buff young man at her side. He was the love of her life, him and her precious toddlers. She drew strength as she focused on his glazed compassion filled eyes, then, simultaneously, their tears surged. The sterile room reeked of disease and the crooked poster on a dank wall listed 'What Cancer can not take From you.' Cancer was extracting everything from her . . . the hope of life itself! Cancer catapulted her here, signing papers that would send her into a world of unknown treatments and results. "God. Help. Me." was her silent cry, begging for answers. Was there a God? Where is God? Is there an eternity?
This is the description of one 'mission field' in my back yard. What is yours?
How can she know Jesus is the answer? Jesus understands every pain; the loss of health, loved ones, relationships, financial reversals, abandonment, shunning, betrayal and gapping loneliness. The world, our neighbours and family need to hear from us we carry the torch, the light, to this generation, and that is . . . the mission.
Jesus modeled the missionary/evangelist life and used object lessons to teach and I like that because I enjoy using visual-aides to share Bible truth, be they puppets/ventriloquism or other. Jesus took a stick and wrote on the ground, a coin from of a fish's mouth, and my favourite is when Jesus took off his outer clothing, tied on a strip of linen, clutched a basin of water and crawled from disciple to disciple washing their dirty feet. That lesson? Until you are willing to be servant of all you are not willing to be servant at all. Jesus said, "I have not come to be served but to serve." and "If you want to be great . . . you need to be a servant." This servant-hood comes from a heart empty of self and filled with the supernatural love that only God can gift. This miraculous love springs from knowing the fullness of God's redemption found in Jesus, and then walking in the powerful anointing of the Holy Spirit. 1 Cor 13 says that without this love our words, our actions, are merely sounding brass and tinkling symbols. We must experience this love only then can we answer the cries of those begging to know is there a God and, where is he? How can they know the relevance of Jesus in their crisis/daily life until they see him as the centre of ours?
God choses people, missionaries, of every walk of life and He is choosing you. Some the New Testament missionaries/evangelists/prophets who carried the good news with the power of love were Phillip (four daughter each a prophetess), Paul missionary/evangelist Lydia, a business woman (Paul's first convert), Pricilla (wife and church leader) her husband Aquila (tent maker) all were compelled to 'go and tell' the good news to all people everywhere. "Repent for the "Kingdom of heaven is near" and Jesus' cousin, John the Baptizer, shouted out "Repent and be baptized!" This is the life-transforming message we must share today, and we need to encourage each other with . . . Jesus is coming soon!
Missionary men and women (note: the majority of the most remote/dangerous mission posts are filled by women) who are serving as evangelists, teachers, nurses, deacons, elders, Sunday school workers i.e. bus drivers, clergy and laity 85% of them heard the call to ministry, service, to missions, as a child or early in their youth! We must focus on children. Tell the children about Canadian missionaries i.e. Aimee Semple McPherson (founded worldwide Four Square Gospel Church), Joseph Scriven (author: What a Friend we Have in Jesus, and servant to widows) and others like Eric Liddell's pregnant wife Florence and two daughters who fled to Toronto, Ontario, for safety, never to see Eric again (an Olympic Gold medalist, depicted in the Oscar winning Chariots of Fire but first and foremost a missionary to China where he died a martyr).
I too can testify of a call as a child to be an evangelist. My parents, non-church people, answered a radio ad offering to pick up kids and take them to Sunday school, sponsored by Central Pentecostal church. Volunteers (missionaries) Ray/Liz Sader and others used their cars/vans/buses to transport us. Eventually my mom, step dad and many siblings came to know Jesus and today dozens of the next generation(s) are following and serving! My niece Amber is helping me at Missions Fest 2018 and Ethan, my grandson, is interning in Courtney, BC, at a Four Square Church!
The miracle of a child, one individual, moving from darkness to light, from death to life, is incomprehensible because it is miraculous. Dr. Bill Graham said, "It is the Holy Spirit's job to convict, God's job to judge and my job to love." The beauty of Holy Spirit conviction is that its not condemnation. Condemnation is like standing in naked shame before God. The Holy Spirit conviction is a warm hand clasping ours leading us to the cross where we kneel before a Holy God and feel the warm sacrificial love of Jesus cleansing us as we confess our need of a Saviour and experiencing his healing balm as we lay down our pain, sorrow, sin and shame. We rise to the arms of Jesus embraced in his pure redemption. His love shields us as we face every foe, even cancer. God raised Jesus from the dead, he can raise us from the clutches of death, sickness and disease. Jesus replaces our fear with irreversible trust wrapped in the gift of hope, eternal life! Jesus, Immanuel; God with us (Math 1:23). Until he returns or calls us home everyone, no exception, is a laborer in His harvest field (Math 9:37&38). Is your life right with God? Are you busy doing your fathers business? He is calling you.
The call to missions/ministry can happen at anytime in our spiritual journey. Corrie Ten Boom, author, evangelist, Tramp for the Lord, lived to be 90 years old. Corrie travelled more miles, impacting more people for the gospel in her last ten years than her previous 30 combined! What about you?
The Holy Spirit will empower us to stay the course. Until we hear "well done good and faithful servant" we must keep marching! Jesus is coming soon, this is our watch, let's get the job done!
By Maralee Dawn