When I was a teenager/young adult I would have never imagined that we as a society would be facing some of the controversial issues we now do daily. The fact of the matter is, this is where we are and turning a blind eye to all of it, solves nothing. Neither does addressing it incorrectly.
We all have been hearing much discussion, debate and even arguments regarding the recent Kathy Griffin photo shoot. I, in no way disagree that it was a horrid imagery to release into the public eye. Whether the image be that of the President or any other person, it is still a matter of horrific moral display. I agree with that conclusion.
With that being said, let me state what I don’t agree with. I do not agree with the type of backlash – we the people of God – are putting out there and targeting Kathy Griffin with. I’m seeing a steady flow of name calling, less than beneficial criticism, condemnation and a repeated recalling of her “sin” being spewed out over her.
First of all, let me state; accountability and condemnation are not the same. Accountability takes place when someone takes a responsibility of recognition for their personal actions. Condemnation is a forced weight of guilt and shame laid upon someone else for the purpose of punishing them for an action they took part in.
Accountability – “an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one's actions” [Source: Merriam-Webster]
Condemnation – “Condemnation comes from the verb condemn, "to strongly disapprove." You might criticize something that you still think is worthwhile, but if you express condemnation, that’s laying a heavy moral blame. Condemnation is used in law, and means the same thing as sentencing; you might have heard a judge say “I condemn you to ten years of hard labor.” Also, a very dangerous building will be sealed up and deemed uninhabitable by an act of condemnation.” [Source: Vocabulary.com Dictionary]
Condemnation - “a statement or expression of very strong and definite criticism or disapproval” [Source: Merriam-Webster]
Accountability takes place naturally when the heart softens and receives a personal conviction within. More often than not, when a person feels the conviction of wrong-doing within their heart, a positive change is the result. Condemnation promotes shame and although may enforce an outward response of change, it does not produce an effectual and lasting change within the heart.
My question would now be; as Believers in Christ Jesus and His love and grace, what is or should be our goal within every given situation as well as for every person? Stoning? Control? Salvation? Redemption? Liberty? Healing? Bondage? Life? Death?
As people who are representing Jesus and His love and covenant, I know which of those above choices should be the correct picks. That leads me to another question. Are our words, responses, and actions correctly depicting who Jesus is and the message He and the Cross carries?
May I suggest, as Believers in Jesus, that we begin to fight these battles in the effective and powerful manner we were given to go to battle with by the Holy Spirit? Let’s lay down the stones and take up prayer and life producing declarations!
What if we decided to become unified as one Body? The Body of Christ – and as one, set our hearts and minds to stop speaking words that condemn Kathy Griffin but rather have mercy on her, and in that mercy - the same mercy that we’ve been given time and time again – we begin to sincerely pray for her salvation and the renewal of her mind and heart in Christ. What if we declare that God perfectly knit her together and has a plan for her and pray that she steps into the perfect plan of God for her life? What if we pray blessings and the will of God over her? How much more powerful would that be for; the sake of our President; the sake of Kathy Griffin; the sake of all who she may be influencing – not to mention, for the sake of our testimony of Jesus Christ?! It’s a win-win situation.
The Word tells me it’s God’s desire for no one to perish. That means our President as well as Kathy Griffin.
“The Lord isn’t slow to do what he promised, as some people think. Rather, he is patient for your sake. He doesn’t want to destroy anyone but wants all people to have an opportunity to turn to him and change the way they think and act.” 2 Peter 3:9
We did not earn our salvation, it’s a free gift, therefore neither can we expect those who are still of the world to earn their salvation. As freely as it was given to us, we are to freely give to those around us. The truth is, the moment prior to us being transformed in Christ through the gift of salvation, we were filthy sinners deserving nothing more than condemnation. The beauty of grace through the Cross is that Jesus did not come so that we would receive what we deserve. In fact, it’s just the opposite. He came to deliver us from what we deserve!
“For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. God did not send his Son into the world to condemn it, but to save it.” John 3:16-17 “Then he said, “Go into the world. Go everywhere and announce the Message of God’s good news to one and all.” Mark 16:15. We frequently use this scripture to confirm mission trips and being sent into other nations. I believe whole-heartedly it does give instruction for us to leave the comforts of our homeland and as the Spirit leads, go into foreign lands to deliver His message. I also believe it’s more than that. I believe it also can mean, the world around us, right where we’re living. The Word tells us we’re no longer ‘of’ the world but it’s not the Lord’s desire that we be taken ‘out’ of the world. If we remove ourselves from the world then who will give the message of the gospel to the world? Who will be the light that shines into the darkness if we refuse to walk where it’s dark? Keeping our eyes and hearts affixed on Jesus allows us to move about within the world and yet not be filled by its influences. Being the light in the world means we must not battle the issues of the world by worldly ways. We are to be set apart and fight the good fight with the higher ways. Love. Prayer. Words that create life and peace.
I hear the voice of the Holy Spirit saying, “I challenge you to become a mighty of people of prayer who pray in one accord for the return of My children who have strayed into the world, but whom I have created to be a powerful impact on the world with My message of hope and truth through the gifts and talents I have placed within them. They have a powerful message of deliverance hiding inside of them but they became ensnared by the fantasy of what the world could offer being greater and more fulfilling than what My peace gives. They have strayed and become entangled but through your unity in prayers of agreement and love they can be brought back home to continue in their industry powerfully for Me.”
When the Lord is speaking this into my hearing there are two performers I clearly see in my mind’s eye. The first being, Katy Perry (Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson) and the second is Lady Gaga (Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta). These two women have been given amazing talent by the Lord Himself. They may not have made decisions along the path of their life that is reflecting this talent being used for God’s glory, but nevertheless the talent within them is still as much as from the Lord as what is the greatest worship singer. When we are created from the very beginning of life, we are given gifts and talents from the Lord. Just as He knitted every portion of our physical being together, He knitted within us those talents and gifts as well. He does not force us to use our talents for Him, therefore some stray onto a path that is not of His will. The promises of the world can become very enticing if we are not strong in our walk and steadfast in discernment of truth. When the world’s lure snags us, we then fall prey to its deception and can quickly become under its bondage as well.
Just as the Lord has challenged us to unite for these two women, (as well as whoever else He may lay on your heart) let’s remember they have become victims to the seductions of a very real enemy who practices in deception. Instead of condemning and snubbing our noses to them, let’s purpose to get on our knees on their behalf and pray fervently for their return to their Creator, who loves them as much as He does anyone of us. His desire first and foremost is for their salvation. Secondly, these people have a call of God on their lives to be a powerful voice of influence for the Kingdom.
As the Lord has spoken to me to deliver this message, I therefore challenge you to come into agreement through prayer and declaration for the return of these ladies into the Kingdom of God and for them to return to their purpose and destinies in Him. When we unite as one Body, in one accord with the Holy Spirit, together we can accomplish the miraculous. Please, let’s lay down the stones – pick up the prayer shields, unite as ONE BODY, and watch what can be accomplished when we move together in His love & Spirit as He has called us to do.
If you accept this challenge please pass this on to those who are in your sphere of influence and let us become one body of Christ moving in agreement – going into the ALL world with the good news.
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