Dear Beachside Family and Friends,
My maternal grandfather, John Phillips, was a solid, hard working farmer who rose every day before the sun and went to bed not long after sunset. He followed the same routine day in, day out, for his entire life. During his lifetime, the culture around him changed dramatically. When he was born, horse and buggy were the predominant means of transport, and when he went to heaven the space shuttle was making regular trips to earth orbit
People and society changed as well. They stopped going to church regularly, started living with each other instead of getting married, and turned over the education of their children to government schools. They stopped respecting authority, and yet began to believe that they could not succeed without government assistance. They decided that a relationship with God was defined by what humans thought, not what God said.
FAITH AND VALUES
As I watched society change, I noticed my grandfather did not. He still rose before the sun, did his work, and slept soon after sunset. He still went to church every Sunday, and did not do any work that day except to care for his animals. He respected authority, didn’t look to Washington to provide for him, and remained with my grandmother until death parted them. Culture changed, but John Phillips did not. He remained true to his faith and values, and lived a long and successful life.
There is tremendous pressure from those in education, government, and entertainment seeking to change Christianity to accommodate the tenants of pop culture, or simply eliminate it. Society wants you and I to change to be like them. The Apostle John wrote “Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.” (1John 2:15-17)
The “change” being demanded of Christians is not about tolerance, it’s about compulsion: compelling Christians to be like the world. I cannot change my life or teaching to please those who desire to call themselves Christians but live like the world. Didn’t Jesus call US to change the world? When faced with the demands of this world to change, I have decided my course. I’m going to be like my grandfather and remember the Word of God: “I am the Lord, and I do not change.,,,(Malachi 3:6)