Monday, January 14, 2008

My Fellow Christians: LIGHTEN UP!

Just before Christmas, I went to a prayer meeting at Westpointe, billed as "Push" -- praying for the city and various sectors of Vancouver.

There were a lot of high-powered evangelical types there and a lot of loud and power-packed praying going on ... but (to cut through the chase) there were two things glaringly absent from the evening, and both begin with the letter "J".



The prayers and exhortations focused on images of war -- one said that she saw a spear, with Westwood (the church in Coquitlam where the first meeting was held) at one end and Westpointe (our church) at the other -- and another wanted everyone to move in together like some kind of Roman army marching position. There was talk about emulating the prophets and the great OT warriors and raising up "armies" of praying Christians to take back the city from the grip of Satan. People were "travailing" for the state of righteousness in the city and the country -- a lot of pained expressions and entreaties for God to send us the anointing and the mantle of the prophets of old.

And through it all, all I could hear was: "The battle is already won!"

Isn't that what Jesus did, 2000 years ago at Calvary? Didn't He win the battle, beating death and shoving His victory right in Satan's face?

Why are we still trying to fight a war that's already over? We've scored the touchdown. We should be doing one of those embarrassing end-zone displays that cost you 15 yards in the NFL. We should be spraying champagne all over one another and dumping Gatorade over our pastors. We should be riding in a ticker-tape parade down Georgia Street. Instead, people are acting as though they want to put the ball back on the 50 yard line* and run the same plays again. The only "army" we should be raising up is one filled with faith-fuelled Christians, walking in radical health, radical love, and radical (dare I say it?) prosperity (yes! I used the "P" word!); proclaiming Jesus to this generation and showing everybody that the light of Christ is far greater than any darkness Satan tries to spread.

You can't snuff out darkness. But you can overpower it with light.

We have to make that light burn so brightly that Satan doesn't have a chance. If we focus on the things that are wrong with the world, Satan will never run out of things to throw at us. There's no shortage of things that can cause offense. But if we focus on Jesus and His glory, we focus on a single thing and everything else fades to black.

Once we Christians get that message, we'll find unrighteousness will catch the next train westward, and sooner or later plunge into the ocean.

*For Canadians, that would be OUR OWN 50 yard line!

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