Choosing to engage in the intersection of faith and public policy often brings us face to face with many issues that your mom might have described as “things you don’t talk about in polite company.” NC Family President John Rustin knows this better than most. He stands on the front lines on many of the battles where biblical truth clashes with public policy. In this guest column, John explains how he—and the entire NC Family staff—keep it all in perspective.
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Perspective In The Midst Of Political Storms
By NC Family President John L. Rustin
I think it’s safe to say that many of us are deeply troubled by the growing sense of turmoil, division and strife we see in America today. Whether it’s the gun debate, wars over sex and gender, partisan bickering, political scandals, or blatant bias in the media, it’s easy to be overcome and suffer from a healthy dose of dismay, discouragement, and even disgust.
Each Monday morning, the NC Family staff gathers for a weekly staff meeting and prayer time. In addition to talking about specific work assignments and projects, we take time to pray together, and we often find ourselves engaging in discussions about headline news stories, challenging policy issues, and the general tenor of politics in our state and nation. Our hearts tend to become heavy, as well!
Even if you don’t work in the realm of politics and public policy, it is possible to fall victim to what I call “the rip tide of cultural calamity.” The more negative news we hear, the more off-track our society seems to be, the more our human frailty and failings come to the surface, the more we can feel like we are being swept out to sea without a floatation device to grasp onto or an anchor line to secure us.
Ephesians 4:14, says that apart from “unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God,” we are like infants, “tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming.”
Ultimately, without a proper perspective, we risk getting pulled into the culture, sucked under the waves, or simply checking out altogether!
Ephesians continues, “Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.” (Eph. 4:15-16)
Every Monday, as the NC Family staff gathers, we pray that God will equip us and enable us to effectively speak His truth in love to our culture. By His grace, we are called to engage in this work, not alone, but together—as members of the body of Christ and as a community of believers. And this includes you, too!
We also know that in order to effectively speak God’s truth in love and to grow in maturity in our relationship with Christ, we first must know His truth. Proverbs 1:7 advises, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” How accurately this describes the root of many of the societal problems we see today!
Consider the wisdom of Proverbs 2, as the writer describes those who fear the Lord and seek His truth:
“For the Lord gives wisdom; from his mouth come knowledge and understanding. He holds success in store for the upright, he is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, for he guards the course of the just and protects the way of his faithful ones. Then you will understand what is right and just and fair—every good path. For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will be pleasant to your soul. Discretion will protect you, and understanding will guard you. Wisdom will save you from the ways of wicked men….” (Proverbs 2:6-12)
What a comfort this is in our current day and age, and what a contrast this is to “the rip tide of cultural calamity” that is stirring around us!
Be encouraged that in the midst of strife, angst and enmity, Jesus calls us to work together to anchor our culture with His truth and His love. And as His purposes are accomplished, it is possible for us to experience His peace and perspective in the midst of the storm.
It is a privilege to walk this path with you and the members of the NC Family staff, as together we pursue our vision of “A state and nation where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive and life is cherished.”