First, we have cheapened our concept of America . Have we not cheapened the economy, the American dollar, lowered our spiritual values, and despised our national heritage. Not everyone knows what it means to be an American. Have we forgotten that our forefathers poured out sweat, blood, and tears to build this land of the “free and the brave.” When I was a kid, the “Stars and Stripes” meant--that Americans had a precious diamond. After singing “The Star Spangled Banner,” tears filled our eyes, a lump appeared in our throats, and tugs of love and respect pulled at our hearts. Minutes passed after singing that song before we could be quieted. We knew that the blue of “Old Glory” stood for loyalty, white meant purity, and the red represented the blood of martyrs who died so that it could wave over a land of the free and the brave. In these days, we are holding in our lifeless hands the riches of our fathers and mothers without experiencing the truths that built our governmental, religious, and educational edifice. Have we not cheapened and make commonplace the American flag? I didn’t like the flag patched on the blue jeans of the Hippies during the 60’s. I still believe in holding our flag high with honor. Even higher must we lift the Son of the Living God! All of this cheapening that is taking place in America has its deep roots in the spiritual.
Secondly, Americans have cheapened and twisted out of context the Biblical meaning of the cross. We treat the Cross of Jesus like it is a holy horseshoe. It is easy to praise the Christ of the cross only if He doesn’t interfere with our godless, sinful living. We sing on Sunday morning, “To the old rugged cross I will ever be true. Its shame and reproach gladly bear….” We are too spiritually puny to bear Christ’s cross any kind of way, not even gladly. We don’t have enough spiritual energy to make it back to worship on Sunday night much less go and win a precious soul-- a “rough diamond” to Christ. So goes the home—so goes America !
Thirdly, America is crumbling because we have devalued the value of the home. No longer is it a castle built with built in protection. Now it is a little, flimsily hut that any easy puff of wind can blow down. At one time the woman was the loving heart and the man the tough, caring head of the home. A home with two heads and no heart is a monstrosity.
Fourthly, we play fast and loose with other eternal issues—such as our soul. Have you cheapened your precious soul? Where will your soul spend eternity—Heaven or Hell? Have we not treated the Blood of Christ as an unholy, cheap thing? What about the church? God has never devalued the true church. It is still His pearl of great price. Diamonds in the rough are plentiful in Africa ; therefore, kids can play marbles with diamonds and never realize the value of what they are playing with.
Before God finishes with our lives, all of us are diamonds in the rough. Rough human stones need to be put into the hands of the Master Cutter (God) to be clamped down and examined under the magnifying glass of the Word. Do you feel clamped in, but would like to run away from your circumstances? After the clamping and examination process, a diamond master cutter would then apply sprinkled diamond dust to shape and to polish those dirty, ugly stones that are filled with yet unknown potential to make them glow and scintillate. How many people in times past or even recently looked at the snow sparkling or flashing in the sun like diamonds? Are you having some unpleasant things happen to you? Give them to the Master Polisher, and He will make you sparkle for Jesus.
God is a polisher of our lives. Is God using His diamond dust such as troubles, disappointments, hardships, and sufferings to shape and to polish you? Has God ever used His diamond dust of love on you? The Apostle Paul said, while speaking about the hereafter, “For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18). He also knew that the hardships of living life would release the beauty of a Christian’s soul. Paul was beaten, imprisoned, stoned, and starved because of preaching the gospel. God used His “diamond dust” like a mirror on Paul in order for us to see the attributes of God shining through Paul’s trying circumstances.
The Apostle Paul spoke of people building their lives on gold, silver, and precious stones or on wood, hay and stubble. Will your edifice survive the fiery test of the Judgment Day? Why not sprinkle some diamond dust of love on others? Why not sprinkle some diamond dust given to prayer? Sprinkle on some faith. I hope that this article brought some comfort, some pain, some challenge, and Holy Spirit conviction to all of us. If you have gained or grown in your patriotic spirit of respect for our political and religious heritage, then this article has done you well. If a new song has been put on your lips, I hope that it is not a lullaby. Rather let it be a reveille to the Cause of Christ. Join us in worship at Kaplan Baptist Church . Remember to pray for me. I need your prayers and you need the practice. Please call 337-643-7971 for spiritual encouragement.
Sunrise Easter Service Schedule At Kaplan Baptist Church
Speaker: Pastor Loyd Sowers
Time: 7 a.m. on April 4th
Sunday School and Breakfast to follow the 7 a.m. Worship Service.
Guests in Concert: Southern Plainsmen Singers, at 10 a.m.