It was 12:55PM in Manila. I was sitting at home, having already celebrated the new year coming in, hoping to catch the ball drop in Times Square on TV. I was surfing USA TV channels trying to find the least-annoying hosts to watch the festivities. I ended up turning off the TV in frustration. Yes, the hosts were annoying. But what I encountered that caused me to turn off the TV in disgust was not annoying, mindless babble; it was debauchery glorified.
Just 4 minutes before the ball dropped, FOX News was broadcasting from what appeared to be a strip club. They said it was a “party” in Miami. I didn’t want or need to see that, so I flipped over to CNN. The first face I saw was Anderson Cooper. The second was Kathy Griffith. I didn’t need to hear the filth that she often delivers either, so I changed to ABC. That was no good either. The first face I caught sight of was Miley Cyrus. Again, not interested in anything she has to say or show. My next stop was NBC, and the girl with Carson Daily was chugging wine from the bottle.
I gave up.
And in giving up, I became very disheartened. The only thing that I saw on the faces of the revelers was selfishness, pride, debauchery, and all that goes with it. And those faces, beamed around the globe, represent the direction America is heading. Perhaps the place she has already arrived.
But what should I expect, really? What I was watching was the world’s celebration. Most of those people would not even claim to be a follower of Christ. So I’m not mad at them. But I am inspired by them. I am inspired that 2014 may be the year that many of them find Christ as their Savior. 2014 may be the year that America’s churches rise up and stand against the sin that is pervading our society. 2014 may be the year of revival that America so desperately needs. As I watched on TV, I could feel, tangibly, the roots of my country being torn apart by sin. The very foundations of our society crumbling around us, with seemingly only a few of us to take notice.
But there is hope. The Bible says that the church is the “ground and pillar of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15).
Our churches are the light shining in the darkness. And in 2014, it looks to be as black a night as ever.