“A watched pot never boils.” I have heard that line since I was a child. I know it is not valid. If you watch a pot of water over a flame long enough, it will start boiling. The problem is, most people do not have the patience to sit there long enough, looking at nothing more than a pot of water getting hotter, waiting for it to boil.
Because we are not watching, the roaring boil in the pan takes us by surprise, just like when cooking crabs. Place the crabs in a pot of cold water, turn on the heat, and wait. Because the rise in temperature was slow, the crabs never complain, they just get cooked when the boiling point arrives. However, if you put crabs in a pot already boiling, they will scream, (yes, they do make a sound) and climb out of the pot – a fantastic thing to witness, unless you happen to be the cook or the crab.
A friend of mine asked me the other day if I would be in favor of putting prayer back into schools. I replied with two simple questions – Who will be doing the praying? And, Who will they be praying to? The look on my friend’s face was one of confusion and fear, as these questions had never occurred to her.
We have reached a point in this country where many children know little or nothing about God.
Seven years ago, I was in a parade. Directly behind my group was a church float. On the float was a man hanging on a cross; a representation of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. We just started when I heard a child about 10 years old ask those with her, “Why is that man hanging on a cross?” Then another child, “Who is that guy up there?”
The questions from children about the man on the cross were so frequent I started to count – about two-thirds of the way through the parade route, I quit counting when I reached 40. I heard one mother respond to her child, “That’s church stuff, you don’t need to know that.”
I tend to believe that most atheists when seeing a man on a cross would associate it with Jesus Christ, but it appears many American children do not. I understand that my testing ground was one parade, but this parade did not take place inside a liberal stronghold; this is Indiana, a deeply conservative state – Pence country.
As a nation, we no longer blush over sin (Jeremiah 6:15, 8:12). As a nation, we have gone beyond tolerating sin to applauding it and even placing it on a pedestal (Romans 1:28-32).
We have gone from a nation that started with a document that refers to God four times (see the Declaration of Independence) to one whose members of government cheer, applaud and celebrate when they pass laws permitting the killing of children in the womb.
George Washington, our first president, said, “While we are zealously performing the duties of good citizens and soldiers, we certainly ought not to be inattentive to the higher duties of religion. To the distinguished character of Patriot, it should be our highest glory to add the more distinguished character of Christian.”
Could someone be elected to the U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, or the presidency if they came out and said what Washington said? That it was more important to be a good Christian than a good citizen? That the highest glory a person could have is to have the “distinguished character of Christian.”
We have gone from a nation where our elected leader believed the most important thing a person could do was be a good Christian to one where if you want to be a Christian, that is okay, but keep your faith behind the church doors. No prayer or Bible in schools, no manger scene in the town square. Praying before a sporting event is offensive and claiming that any activity is a sin is intolerant, hateful, and bigoted.
As Christians, we cannot blame the liberal, or the heathen, for our nation being this way. The fault lies with us. 2 Chronicles 7:14, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall 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.”
In the spiritual realm, if doing these things will heal the land, continually doing these things will also keep it from getting sick.
Like the water in the crab pot, none of America’s problems came instantly, the water heated over time. The answer is with the people called by God’s name – CHRISTians. There must be a humbling, much prayer, seeking God’s face through immersing ourselves into the Word of God, and turning from our sins – then will God heal the land. The time is now, or else the pot will boil, and every crab inside will be cooked.
Preacher Johnson is pastor of Countryside Baptist Church in Parke County, Indiana. Pastor Tim can be contacted via email: firstname.lastname@example.org; or by regular mail: Pastor Tim, 410 S. Jefferson St., Rockville, IN 47872. Sermons and archived Preacher’s Points can be found at www.preacherspoint.wordpress.com.