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It’s That Time Again—Part 1

Here we go again. It happens every four years. I’m not talking about the Olympics but about the long, drawn-out season of bloated speeches, empty promises, and mud-slinging television ads. That’s right. It’s election season!

Many Christians aren’t excited about their choices for president this year. I know that many have also decided to “sit this one out” and not vote, because they don’t like the candidates.

I can understand that! But as American Christ-followers, we don’t just have a right and privilege to vote; we have a responsibility to do so. Too many Christians waive that right when election time rolls around. And it’s making a big difference in our country—a difference in the wrong direction.

During the election of 2012, several Christians I knew said that they wouldn’t vote because although they didn’t like President Obama’s policies, they couldn’t support Mitt Romney because he wasn’t an Evangelical Christian. Maybe this describes you. If so, you’re probably finding yourself in a similar situation now. So, what should you do?

First, realize that your “non-vote” is still a vote. Someone’s going to win, so you may as well have a say in it. Second, it’s important to understand how to properly—and realistically—evaluate a candidate. Many Christians are looking, hoping, and waiting for the perfect candidate. Unfortunately, we live in a fallen world, and all of our candidates will reflect that.

In his teaching “Christians and Politics,” Andrew discusses evaluating candidates based on how their values align with biblical values. As Andrew points out, there is a clear difference in our two major political parties in terms of which one aligns more closely with God’s Word, particularly on the issues of abortion and homosexuality (see Lev. 20:13, Ps. 139:13-16, Prov. 6:16-17, and 1 Cor. 6:9-10). Of course, some candidates and elected officials may not agree with all points of their party’s platform, but generally, the vast majority do. Learn more about the platforms by visiting the party websites: and

Some may say, “There’s more to consider than just these social issues.” Yes, there are other concerns. But what’s most important to God—issues of morality and righteousness, or issues such as taxes and the economy? If, as a country, we align the former with Scripture, the rest will follow: “Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the nation whose God is the Lord” (Ps. 33:12, Amplified Bible). If we make God our Lord, the Word promises blessings to us. One way to show that God is our Lord is to vote, to the best of our ability, for those who promote God’s priorities.

In “Christians and Politics,” Andrew quotes the old adage, “If America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” Andrew adds that “the problem with our nation is a lack of morality.” For the sake of America’s future, we must learn from God’s Word what’s important to Him and then vote for candidates who hold similar positions and values. Sadly, most politicians fall short of God’s standards, but we still need to choose those who come closest. God’s Word, not our personal interests, must be the final authority when we step into the voting booths.

Be an informed voter. Instead of voting a straight party ticket because “that’s what I’ve always done,” research each individual candidate. And, don’t stop with presidential candidates, but also vote for local representatives. Your city councilman could become a future U.S. president. Also, don’t forget your school board. Today’s children are tomorrow’s leaders. What kind of influence do you want their schools and teachers to have? You can decide by voting.

So, don’t sit this one out. Pray. Search God’s Word for direction on how to vote. Then vote for all levels of government and every issue placed before you. Use the power you have to get this country back on track.

Share a comment below if this has inspired you.


The Package Is on Its Way!

My son was supposed to have been born on September 27, 1998. But that day came and went. As the nurses were monitoring him every couple days after his due date, I remember my doctor saying, “We see the package and it looks fine.” Then he laughed and said, “When he’s being delivered,
you’ll know.”

As my son grew, I would pray for the bumps and bruises he’d encounter. In the fourth grade, he began having problems in math. I prayed for him to succeed and not fail. By the end of the fourth grade, he had improved a lot. When that year’s report card came in the mail, I held the evidence of answered prayer in my hands (he earned a B!).

When we pray, there is sometimes a temptation to believe that God the Father is like the unjust judge in Luke 18. In Andrew’s book, A Better Way to Pray, he uses this example. When we see God this way, we are believing that we have to be persistent—as if we are wrestling an answer away from Him that He doesn’t want to give. And if we “trouble” Him enough, He’ll “avenge” (answer) us, just to get us off His back (Luke 18:5).

As Andrew says, “That’s not what this passage is saying. God is not like the unjust judge” (pp. 67-68). Andrew explains how Jesus uses this example because He is pointing out a wrong attitude about prayer. “This parable is a contrast showing us the absurdity of such thinking.” Then Andrew says that in Luke 18:8, Jesus basically straightens them out: “I tell you that he will avenge them speedily [meaning when His children pray] . Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (brackets added). In other words, the delay is connected to our lack of faith. It never comes from the Father who answered all things in His Son on the cross in anticipation of our needs—over 2,000 years ago!

Andrew explains that if you see God as an unjust judge when you pray, “…you’re approaching God in an adversarial relationship…and believing what Christ did wasn’t enough” (p. 70). Wow! You might just have to let that sink in. How can you and I pray in faith while seeing Him that way?

Imagine that you call your sister and tell her you are leaving the post office, and you had just mailed her a gift. Then an hour goes by, and she calls you up, crying, “You lied! I went to the mailbox and it wasn’t there.” What would you think? Would you be angry? Then she calls you the next afternoon, but this time she’s angry. “I just went for the mail and the package is still not there! Are you sure you really mailed it?”

This is how we sometimes act toward God when His promises don’t show up right away. I know our Father is not angry with us when we do not understand Him or the wonderful gift He’s given us in prayer. In fact, because of what Jesus did for us, He invites us to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of
(Heb. 4:16).

If you’ve ever been unsure about how God responds when you pray, Andrew’s book A Better Way to Pray can help you grow in confidence toward Him. It’s available in CD, DVD, book, and study guide formats. It’s available in Spanish as well. I also encourage you to watch Andrew as he teaches A Better Way to Pray on the Gospel

If this has blessed you, post a comment below.


Testimony Power

I believe that a big part of being in heaven will be our hearing both the well-known and unknown stories of believers on earth. That’s why testimonies are so powerful; they carry the convictions of the people who lived them. I was an eyewitness to many amazing demonstrations of God’s love during the most recent Charis Bible College missions trip to England, and I believe that these demonstrations will be talked about in glory for all of eternity.

For example, one night at a church youth group, one young man’s urge to commit suicide was taken away. Something about his face actually changed when he was delivered. At Dovegate Prison in Staffordshire, one inmate who had committed murder was filled with the Holy Spirit as a student ministered the love and acceptance of God to him. And at St. Peter’s Church in Walsall, a student prayed for a woman who had crushed bones in her hips and legs, and the woman was suddenly able to bend and dance without pain. These displays of God’s goodness were so wonderful. Yet I witnessed two miracles that demonstrated God’s love to me in a special way.

The first happened while the Charis team was at a healing service in the beautiful town of Harrogate. Arceli Abernathy was asked to teach. She received a word of knowledge that the Holy Spirit wanted bones to be healed. She noticed a young woman with crutches and a splint boot get up to leave. Arceli called out to her, “Jesus wants to heal you today, sister.” Although reluctant, she agreed to let Arceli pray for her.

She had a right foot injury where a ligament had never healed, and her foot was visibly deformed. Before anyone could say a word, Arceli undid the boot splint and took the crutches from her. She commanded her to walk in Jesus’ name. In front of the whole church, the young woman’s foot became straight. The congregation broke out in revival, and everyone came running to the front to receive healing. It was as if the ceiling had opened and miracles were being showered on God’s people.

The second great demonstration was a private one, for an individual: God healed and saved an eighty-six-year-old man named Gordon in the city of Walsall. He was hunched over and pushing a walker, so we asked if we could pray for his legs. Gordon couldn’t hear well, and he shouted back and pointed that it was his knees. I was overwhelmed by a sense of God’s love and care for him. I knew that the Lord had sent us there to prepare him for his future.

After we laid hands on him, Gordon was walking quite easily. But he still couldn’t hear well enough to repeat a salvation prayer. I put my hands on his ears and commanded him, in Jesus’ name, to be able to hear. When we shouted to see if he could hear us, he was pretty startled at how loud it was. We all laughed.

I felt so happy that Gordon could hear and that he had asked Jesus into his life. I ask the Holy Spirit to remind me of him often. When we are all in heaven, I’m going to go looking for Gordon. I know I’ll see him there.

If this post blessed you in a special way, please leave a comment below!