God's word in today's world

And the authorities


My friend has a big business. Many people depend on it. He even pays a pastor to preach the Gospel every day to people hungry for it on the streets of Pretoria.

He produces mainly for a major state entity. They have to use his products, but due to misappropriation and poor management all maintenance simply stopped. That means one part of my friend’s business is standing still. Recently, he had to tell some of his people that he no longer has work for them.

But that’s not all. Last week, the state entity notified him that they may no longer buy anything from him since he is not a BEEE1-certified company. On instructions of national leadership. Now his business, himself and all the other employees are struggling for survival.

One wants to scream to the ceiling. No, you want to call out even higher and ask, why Lord? How will these people get food on the table? How can one keep on going? And then, eventually, you come to the question: Lord, do you still hear me? Lord, what must I do?

And this is the answer I get: 1Remind the people to respect the government and be law-abiding, always ready to lend a helping hand.

No, Lord, I want to call out. I go and look in The Living Bible, but that makes me rebel too: 1Remind your people to obey the government and its officers, and always to be obedient and ready for any honest work.

So, what do I say to my friend and all the others being pressed on all sides by the government?

With all these questions running through my mind, I decide to ask the friend I’m talking about above. He said:

I still believe. We must trust the Lord 100%. Where those doors closed, the Lord will open others, we must simply trust Him with the journey.

Yes, we must obey the authorities, but that’s not to say there’s no other options. I had a very positive reception and experience to do business in Botswana and Mozambique. They’re not pushing the “colour” think.

The Lord has given us talents to go and make a difference wherever we are. Hard times happen to bring us closer to the Lord again.

I learn a lot from my friend.

In our group is another friend who works for a state entity. He has always been a straight talker:

I’m the last one to give advice. But since you’re asking …

We must hope. Our hope must be in God, and not in earthly things.

I have decided to have a positive attitude. I’m alive and the sun is shining and our children worship Him.

As regards politics and the economy … I’m a realist … it’s a mess …

I learn just as much from this friend of mine.

Each of us should get our answers from our Father. There’s a possibility that some questions will remain unanswered, like those my friends and I have. But what I do believe, is that we must keep on hoping and trusting and believing that the authorities will worship our Father too!

Then Titus 3 verse 1 will be easier to digest.

Scripture
Titus 3:1-2

Reflection
How do you feel about the government?
Do you have to act differently?
Are you prepared to pray for the authorities?

Prayer
Lord, the government’s actions don’t always make sense to me. Please help me to focus my hope in You and to trust that You will open new doors. Guide me to hear your voice when I don’t have answers. In Jesus’ Name, amen.

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