My Personal Commitment to You
Before I get into the heart of this article, I want to thank you sincerely for taking the time to read these words. There are millions of things you could be reading or viewing online right now, so I appreciate you taking an interest in what I have to say.
With that, here’s my commitment to you as a radio host, speaker, and author: I will not get your blood boiling unless I can also get your faith rising. I will not only highlight the problem, but I will also point to the solution.
I commit to infusing you with faith and truth and courage rather than inciting you to fear and panic and anger.
I commit to communicating as a child of God who is confident that Jesus is Lord and that the Bible is true. That foundation transforms everything.
My purpose in writing and speaking is not to get likes on an article or clicks on a video. And it is certainly not to get you agitated or annoyed.
Equipped to Stand
Instead, my purpose is to speak the truth in love so that you can be better equipped to stand for what is just and good and right.
If I sound the trumpet with some alarming information, it is to help awaken us to reality, not to be sensationalistic.
If I call out evil, it is not to demonize the opposition but to call us to oppose what is wrong by doing what is right.
Recently, as I’ve been using a new web browser, I have been exposed to a different news site, one that I did not frequent in the past. This site comes up whenever I open a new internet tab, which means that I’m seeing the same news page multiple times every day, with lots of attention-getting headlines jumping onto my screen.
Misleading Click Bait Designed to Lay Blame
Conservatively speaking, I would say that 80 percent of the headlines I have sampled are not just click bait. They are misleading click bait. The article does not deliver what the headline promised. Of what use is this? And at what point will readers simply ignore the catchy headlines?
And then there is the endless stream of anger-provoking news coverage on internet, radio, TV, and written form. “Those people” — meaning, our political and ideological opponents — are downright evil. They are hypocrites. They are dishonest. They are bumbling idiots. They are abject failures. They are destroying our country.
Accordingly, they are worthy of our mockery, our disdain, our scorn, our ridicule, our hatred.
Of course, if you go to “their” websites and watch “their” news programs, you’ll see that they feel the same way about us. We are the bumbling idiots who are destroying the country. We are the dishonest hypocrites worthy of their mockery and scorn.
And what’s our response to their reporting? They are being unfair (but we, of course, are not when it comes to our point of view). They are being selective and presenting an unbalanced perspective (whereas we, of course, are always comprehensive, balanced and ethical).
Perhaps there’s a little hypocrisy on all sides? Perhaps in our zeal to expose “them” we expose our own biases too?
Without a doubt, evil things are being done, and we should call them out — as honestly and fairly and impartially as possible.
Are We Working Towards Productive Solutions or Do We Only See Problems?
But all too often it seems that our goal is to get our side riled up rather than working towards productive solutions to the problems we face. All too often it seems that we are experts in provocation but novices in redemption — and when I say “we,” I mean all of us who share our values and who communicate actively online and in other forums.
Can we commit afresh in this new year to working towards solutions? Can we commit to speaking the truth in love, always with a redemptive tone? Can we commit to building faith and encouraging hope while also sounding the alarm?
Speaking to fellow believers, Paul wrote that God has entrusted us with “the ministry of reconciliation.” Therefore, he explains, “we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God” (2 Corinthians 5:18, 20).
May we never forget that, even as we resolutely oppose evil, even as we remain politically active and alert, even as we confront and call out that which is destructive.
Ambassadors for Christ
That is part of our calling but not all of it. We also have a message of hope and transformation through the cross. We are ambassadors for Christ!
May we never forget that high and lofty calling.
On my end, by God’s grace, I commit to help you live this out. Together, we can make a massive difference.
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Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is The Political Seduction of the Church: How Millions of American Christians Have Confused Politics with the Gospel. Connect with him on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube.