The Path to the Front lines
CHRISTIAN WARRIORS ARE NOT TRADITIONAL
Man’s traditions are comfortable for many but not for the warrior-spirit in God’s chosen leaders. There appears to be a growing awareness among Christians who possess leadership traits (though they may not have official positions within their church) that the traditional American church is not really the front lines of the battlefield, nor should it be. The front lines of battle are in all those places where Christians live out their lives: with their family, with their neighbors and friends, and in their workplaces. These places are where individuals live the bulk of their lives and thus, where the spiritual battles rage. One may spend a few hours per week within the confines of the church or in a Bible study, but this is for equipping us for the battle. The actual fight is engaged in all those places where one spends time.
The equipping that is very common in today’s American churches is simply teaching people to bring family and friends into the church so they can hear a forty-minute sermon message and, hopefully, accept Jesus as their personal Savior. Then they are released into a world where they spend from fifty to one hundred hours of their week listening and watching mainstream media presentations. Think about it: what is going to have the most effect in a person’s life? The church is being increasingly invaded by the world’s values and is becoming weaker and weaker, and it is time to awaken to the sound of the battle and lay aside traditional habits and equip Christian warriors for the fight. Christians need to hear and respond to this command of Jesus, “About-face.” (The following insights were derived from a fine newsletter written by Al Houghton, founder of “Word at Work” Ministries).
“ABOUT - FACE!”
Those with military experience are very familiar with the command “About-face.” It is a command to immediately turn sharply 180 degrees from the direction you are currently facing. It is also a command used by our Commander-in-Chief, who calls us to “turn” from our sins. When we obey that command, He will remove the veil which is blinding us from the truth and put us on the path of growing in spiritual maturity. This willingness to turn in an “About-face” will suddenly cause us to see ourselves as we truly are and thus see our need for a Savior. All of God’s warriors occasionally will go astray and veer from the course that the Lord directs. However, like Moses, David, or Paul, they all have one thing in common: when confronted with their blindness, they will readily turn in an “About-face” and return to following their Commander.
What will Christians do when our Commander-in-Chief commands us to “About-face”? Will they obey Him or listen to other subordinate commanders, such as some church leaders who tell us that the Commander-in-Chief really meant “Right-face” since it is much easier to follow that path. But a partial turn will eventually lead us away from the path that Jesus is going, and even though other commanders tell us that we are moving rightly, we are straying further and further from His direction.
Additionally, these other commanders may attempt to convince us that the command was really “At-ease”: just keep coming and giving to your church and God will be pleased. Eventually, the time comes when the Commander-in-Chief gives the command, “Forward march.” Only those who have heard and obeyed the command “About-face” will be equipped to follow the King of kings and the Lord of lords in the direction He is heading.