(This is a letter from Alex Pettett, Executive Director of World Witness, to all missionaries following the events in the United States on January 6. We hope you will find an opportunity to open conversations with neighbors and others.)
Dear Fellow Workers,
Yesterday was beyond discouraging. In the midst of trying to get work done I kept hitting refresh on a news site to see the latest craziness. I was distracted beyond belief. We gathered the staff and prayed for our nation’s leaders and the DC police. When I went home I found it hard to explain to my kids why people were climbing the Capitol building and were dressed like vikings with warpaint in the most sacred of our government halls. Yes, I felt shaken.
And I know when you walk out your doors, assuming you can because of lockdown measures, people who know you are American probably look at you slightly askance now. Maybe it’s a look of pity or perhaps a wry smile of satisfaction. And you don’t really need the baggage of national judgement. It’s hard enough engaging pagan cultures already hostile to the Gospel.
But, like all times that the earth shakes, is this not an opportunity of engagement? Hebrews 12:27-28 indicates that He shakes things to point to the unshakable kingdom.
So, let’s pivot and use this for the Gospel. The news last night is an amazing conversation starter. Trust me, your nationals want to give their opinions of what happened last night but many are too shy because they don’t want to embarrass you. So, ask them anyway! Admit that we live in a fallen nation with a lot of crazy people, BUT that your ultimate nationality doesn’t have its capital in Washington, DC but a new Jerusalem in the world to come.
In no unequivocal terms should the rioting or violence be excused. Speeches from most of our politicians, except one, at least got that right. But the great US democracy got a fat, black eye last night. Let’s pivot and show that the true kingdom stands unmoved and that the Universal Commander in Chief is in absolute control.
Preach an unshakable Gospel!
This phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken—that is, things that have been made—in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain.Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.