Sackcloth and Ashes

Christians, I am upset with myself.  I was attending our mid-week service recently.  We were praying for our Nation, President, Election, etc which is important.  Then God started to convict me, He showed me some legislation and events that happened in our country recently, and then He showed me my reaction.  

When legislation passed the law for our Nation’s new definition of marriage, I was reading the paper and I was frustrated, upset, and I crumpled the paper a little bit.  That was it. I thought, oh well, what can I do?  I went on to read a different article, and moved on with my life.  I became so upset with myself for this reaction, because God showed me what people used to do in biblical times.  

People in the bible were so much more passionate towards events that happened.  When someone came with bad news, one of the first things people would do, was tear their clothes.  This seems so extreme, but I guarantee to God it showed the desperation and frustration they had as opposed to crumpling the paper a little.  Sometimes they put on sackcloth, a garment for mourning.  They made a public display of their sorrow for the situation.  Finally, they would throw dust and/or ashes on their head, another display of sorrow or grief.

Christian, I do not know about you, but I know my reaction to these events lately have not been in line with how I should feel.  I do not know if I am desensitized or if in America, we have adopted the attitude of, you win some, you lose some.  Maybe you got upset, maybe you changed the channel, ranted about it at work.  But did you pray and petition God, did you wear your knees out crying out for change and run out of tears crying for a nation which has strayed so far from the righteous founding it was established on?  I know I haven’t.

I cannot go back, I cannot re-enact signs of sorrow or mourning, it must be heartfelt.  God does not desire us to do these actions falsely to show him we do not approve of the events happening.  It needs to be genuine and from the heart. In fact in Joel it tells us not to rend our garments, but our hearts.  Then I realized tearing clothes was an external action of an inward emotion.  So my bearings are off in my heart.  I need to have a God-like heart, so that is what I will pray for and seek.  I want to get so upset and weep until I run out of tears, but I need a much more sensitive heart to the things of God.

America is dying, she is very sick, and getting worse.  We need to pray and petition for her as a loved one who is sick and dying, and pray that God restore her to her former beauty and majesty.  The beauty where God was front and center, His commands, His Word.  Where Jesus was not a negative word and prayer was welcomed in schools, and the pledge of allegiance proudly stated we were “One Nation, Under God.”  I pray God chasten our hearts to be in line with His heart, in Jesus name, Amen.

Put on sackcloth, my people, and roll in ashes; mourn with bitter wailing as for an only son, for suddenly the destroyer will come upon us.  Jeremiah 6:26 (NIV)

Then Jacob tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and mourned for his son many days.  Genesis 37:34 (NIV)

Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.  Job 42:6 (NIV)

Rend your hearts and not your garments and return to the Lord, your God, for He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in loving-kindness: and He revokes His sentence of evil [when His conditions are met].  Joel 2:13 (AMP)

There is hope for America:

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.  II Chronicles 7:14 (KJV)

written and posted by Daniel Poggensee | 2016


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