Courage

White Rose croppedYou may remember back in January that Louie Giglio, an Atlanta area pastor, was supposed to pray at the presidential inauguration, but he withdrew after a furor started over a sermon of his from some twenty years prior in which he said homosexuality is a sin, and that redefining marriage to include same-sex couples would undermine society. On January 10th, Passion Church had a statement by Giglio in which he said: “Clearly, speaking on this issue has not been in the range of my priorities in the past fifteen years. Instead, my aim has been to call people to ultimate significance as we make much of Jesus Christ.”

Daniel's Answer to the KingHow can calling people to repent from their sin and turn to Christ not be in his range of priorities? He’s been in the Atlanta area since 1995, and it’s an area with a visible community of men and women in the homosexual lifestyle. I know because my brother died of AIDS in the Atlanta area in 1995. Giglio cannot possibly call anyone to ulti- mate ‘significance’ or make much of Jesus Christ without addressing the issue—not only in the Atlanta area, but also to the thousands of college students who come to the annual Passion convention he leads, because believe me, homo- sexuality is definitely an issue on college campuses. Giglio had an opportunity that week to speak to the entire nation and proclaim the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That is the most loving thing he could have done.

Fiery FurnaceThe redefinition of marriage is a firestorm, and Giglio also had a platform from which to declare God’s truth about marriage. A national platform, with the media focused on him, so his words would have been heard. He could have spoken winsomely about the family and explained God’s purposes in marriage. Instead, he went away with words of excuse. Of what was he afraid? Retaliation? Loss of prestige? Scorn? He had a chance to be an example to other Christians across the nation and around the world, and to strengthen them to stand and persevere. As I read Giglio’s entire statement I thought it was so carefully drawn to try to sound spiritual while at the same time be unoffensive. Well, the Gospel offends, but the Gospel also saves.

EstherWe make much of Jesus Christ when we declare the truth of the Gospel. My heart breaks for those need that truth. My love for Christ and my love for my brother drove me to witness to him over decades. I listened to him, suffered with him, and many times suffered because of him. He turned to me and to my husband when he was in pain. It was costly in tears and in the rejection I knew at times from him and others, but it was worth it. My brother would have died without Christ and remained under God’s wrath.

Even if you and I never have a chance to have a widespread influence, don’t despise the day of small things. In the day of small things there will be important things. In the day of small things someone whom Jesus loves may hear the Gospel from you.

He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much.
Luke 16:10

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Daniel; Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; Esther: images in public domain. Click to enlarge. {{PD-1923}}.

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2 thoughts on “Courage

  1. Thank you so much—for the kind words about the post and for your empathy about my losing my brother. There were times I thought my heart would break, but the Lord has given me a great deal of emotional healing over the years.

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