ALL THAT CAN BE SHAKEN

I am walking the Streets of San Francisco.   I snap this picture and something blasted in my spirit: “all that can be shaken.” God has made His choice.  God has chosen His targets.  God will strike suddenly.

2018: the year that everything that can be shaken will be shaken.

-You companies who have used your wealth and power to persecute the righteous will now be shaken.

-You politicians—who have ruined America for decades will suddenly disappear.

-You preachers who have handled the Word of God deceitfully and cheapened Grace to finance your private life of drunkenness, whoredom, and materialism will have your gift removed in public humiliation.

God shook Himself.  He waited.  He was patient.  He gave you time to play church.  He let you have your blessing toys.  He looked away in hopes we would come to ourselves.  His blessing and his goodness did not bring you to repentance.  No, it became a license to go deeper into counterfeit Christianity.

The America church is guilty of great crimes against the Holy Spirit.  We told Him to leave and lets us grow Christianity incorporated—the worst thing we could have done.

It was a mistake—a terrible, incalculable, ongoing mistake—derailing more truth in less time than any moral plague in history.

It’s why we couldn’t stop Barack Obama—why we made no cogent case to save marriage, the unborn, or free speech—why we stood by and watched America change overnight—why we were helpless to intervene when our nation began hating everything that made her great.

Trump was only the beginning of this shaking.  He is rude, he is offensive—by design.  His words uproot and tear down.  He is a wrecking ball to international corruption.  His crudeness is a tool of a God with a plan.  He makes you queasy?  He scares you?  That’s nothing…

Just wait till they try to get him out of power.  Oh how his enemies rejoice thinking they have nailed him as a racist.  They will fail for 2 simple reasons:  He is not a racist and he is in power for a divine reason.

Watch the most powerful people attack and crumble.  Watch liberal heads explode as Trump remains—not because he is holy or even a good leader—but because he is chosen to wreak havoc on the world system.

Why now you ask?  Why has God rolled up His sleeve to root up false ministries?  Why is He accelerating His earthquakes?  I wondered.  I asked.  The answer was stunning but not surprising.  Here are the reasons:

-We are at the moment when Google, Facebook, Apple, Twitter along with leftist leaders will unfurl a cyber-iron curtain.  Christians will be marginalized.  Values that violate our Constitution and freedom of religion will be enforced.  Bible preaching will be a hate crime.  (How sickening!  Carnal ministers were toadies in this plan to drive the church underground and terrorize Israel.)

-God sees the coming mid-term elections.  Without a miracle by November, Nancy Pelosi will again be the Speaker of the House. What a plague. We are only months away from a leftist backlash that will transcend anything in our history.

God came to the inescapable decision that revival must come now or the nation is lost.  He will pour out wrath…but He will also pour out His Spirit.  Hallelujah!

Look for despised little churches—faithfully preaching the Word of God—to become centers of Glory, miracles and mass conversions.

Look for nobodies to come on the scene like a righteous tornado and roar repentance with such power that their voice will echo in the penthouses of power.

Look for campus ministries to rise because millennials will see the blatant persecution and turn Christianity into a celebrated cause.

Look for preaching to be matched with miracles—confirmation of the WORD by medically inexplicable healings.

Look for God to pull out all the stops to save America.  Look for every ministry fueled by man to fall by the wayside to make room for the voices that cannot be shaken.

Writing this blog brought me great turmoil until something happened that removed all doubt.  I walked the streets of San Francisco fighting an inner war.  Suddenly my cell phone rang.  It was my good Friend Ron McIntosh—president of Victory Bible College in Tulsa.

He asked me, “what is God telling you about 2018?”  Before I could answer him, he said, “God showed me it will be a year where everything that can be shaken, will be shaken.”

 

HOW THE MOST JUDGMENTAL PEOPLE TELL CHRISTIANS NOT TO JUDGE

 

What is the most dangerous lie in America?  What is killing us?  The abuse of a simple phrase that Jesus used, “Judge not that you be not judged.”  In the last few days, our site has smeared with vile posts by people claiming to be open-minded and, amazingly claiming to be more intelligent.  What was even more tragic was the host of self-defined Christians who went along with them saying silly things, “we shouldn’t judge,” and my personal favorite, “you are making it harder for us to reach people.”

I am not making it harder for you to reach people, because I wonder if you are reaching anyone.  How can you witness?  At some  point in witnessing you have to make a moral judgment.

I live in Northern California, ground zero for liberalism.  They are constantly telling people not to judge.  Their hilarious hypocrisy is breathtaking.  Bay Area liberals are the most judgmental people on the planet.  I have lived under environmental, nutritional, gender sharia law most of my adult life.

Last December in Danville California I said, “Merry Christmas,” to my waiter.  He scowled at me and said, “I do not want to exclude anyone.”Talk about a hair trigger!  Everything on earth is a cause for liberals.  How do they sleep at night with so much judging to do???  They judge, food, animal treatment, gardening, the car you drive, even your fireplace.  To them, it is a world is filled with “ists.”    Sexists, elitists, capitalists, fascists, racists, and now because of animal rights there are “Specists” (people who believe humans are a higher species than man.)

Christians we better wake up!  Don’t take Jesus out of context just so you can hide in a deeply immoral nation.   Now read these exercpts by BRANNON HOWSE:

“Tolerance mongers seem to have found the one absolute truth they are willing to live by. How many times have you heard someone say, “Judge not lest you be judged”? The statement has become the great American open-mindedness mantra when anyone has the courage to declare that someone else’s belief, actions or lifestyle is morally amiss.

Another form of the same non-judgmental judgment is “that may be true for you, but it’s not true for me.” The logic behind the statement goes something like this: “Your truth is your truth and my truth is my truth. We are both right, and I hold to my opinion of truth.” The last time I checked, it was impossible for two chairs to occupy the same space around my dining room table, but evidently such rules of time, space and logic don’t apply to tolerance philosophy.

Postmodernism’s live-and-let-live concept of truth argues that even two opposite and wholly contradictory claims can both be true. This is as stupid as saying that black and white are the same color. Yet, it clarifies the absurdity of the postmodernism we are all supposed to blithely accept as the fundamental principle by which we respond to each other’s ideas – the “please and thank-you” of philosophical respect.

So beware.  If you dare claim that another person’s truth is not, in fact, truth but is, in fact, wrong, you are not only being intolerant but you are also being – Mantra forbid! – Judgmental.

In his book “True for You, But Not for Me,” Paul Copan describes the fallacy in this all too common thinking:

It has been said that the most frequently quoted Bible verse is no longer John 3:16 but Matthew 7:1: “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” We cannot glibly quote this, though, without understanding what Jesus meant. When Jesus condemned judging, he wasn’t at all implying we should never make judgments about anyone. After all, a few verses later, Jesus himself calls certain people “pigs” and “dogs” (Matt 7:6) and “wolves in sheep’s clothing” (7:15). … What Jesus condemns is a critical and judgmental spirit, an unholy sense of superiority. Jesus commanded us to examine ourselves first for the problems we so easily see in others. Only then can we help remove the speck in another’s eye – which, incidentally, assumes that a problem exists and must be confronted.

Those that tell you not to judge, quoting Matthew 7:1 grossly out of context, are often some of the most mean-spirited, judgmental souls you could ever meet.It’s not, of course, that they don’t want anyone to judge anything, because they want very much to judge and condemn your commitment to lovingly speak and practice your Christian worldview. You see how these tolerance rules work? We must tolerate them, but they don’t have to tolerate us. The logic is consistent, anyway.

Today’s postmodern culture of adults and students is so consumed by non-judgmentalism that there are some who say we should not even call wrong or evil the terrorists that attacked America on Sept. 11, 2001. In a Time magazine essay entitled “God Is Not on My Side. Or Yours,” Roger Rosenblatt offers the philosophical underpinnings of the live-and-let-live rule for global terrorism:

“One would like to think that God is on our side against the terrorists, because the terrorists are wrong and we are in the right, and any deity worth his salt would be able to discern that objective truth. But this is simply good-hearted arrogance cloaked in morality – the same kind of thinking that makes people decide that God created humans in his own image. The God worth worshiping is the one who pays us the compliment of self-regulation, and we might return it by minding our own business.”

ht and wrong is “good-hearted,” even if the reactions to it aren’t. Alison Hornstein, for instance, is a student at Yale University who observed the disconnect between tolerance and reality. Writing on “The Question That We Should Be Asking – Is Terrorism Wrong?” in the Dec. 17, 2001, issue of Newsweek, Alison noted, “My generation may be culturally sensitive, but we hesitate to make moral judgments.” While that might be putting it mildly, she goes on to say:

Student reactions expressed in the daily newspaper and in class pointed to the differences between our life circumstances and those of the [9-11] perpetrators, suggesting that these differences had caused the previous day’s events. Noticeably absent was a general outcry of indignation at what had been the most successful terrorist attack of our lifetime. These reactions and similar ones on other campuses have made it apparent that my generation is uncomfortable assessing, or even asking whether a moral wrong has taken place.”

Hornstein further describes how on Sept. 12th – one day after Islamic extremists murdered more than 3,000 people on American soil – one of her professors “did not see much difference between Hamas suicide bombers and American soldiers who died fighting in World War II. When I saw one or two students nodding in agreement, I raised my hand. …. American soldiers, in uniform, did not have a policy of specifically targeting civilians; suicide bombers, who wear plainclothes, do. The professor didn’t call on me. The people who did get a chance to speak cited various provocations for terrorism; not one of them questioned its morality.”

If Americans don’t start to judge and punish evil instead of accepting all ideas and beliefs as equal, we will become a nation that welcomes same-sex marriage, polygamy, pedophilia, incest, euthanasia and likely a host of moral aberrations so bizarre they’re still hidden in the darkest reaches of the Internet.

I wish I had a dollar for every time I heard someone say, “you know we are not to judge people; even the Bible says ‘judge not lest you be judged.’” Americans had better start getting comfortable with politically incorrect, non-humanistic forms of making intelligent judgments on moral issues because even if we don’t make them, I’m concerned there is Someone very willing to hold our nation accountable for what we allow. And He doesn’t respond well to intimidation, name-calling, flawed logic or being quoted out of context.

 

Mario Murillo

NOW IS THE TIME TO STAND WITH THE PRESIDENT

Evangelical leaders hailed Trump as a type of King Cyrus.  Now they are bailing on him because they can’t take the heat.   Billy Graham’s grand daughter in a CNN interview on December 26th called, evangelicals who support President Donald Trump  “hypocritical,” claiming that the president actually represents “the opposite of Jesus’ message.”

Just when he needs the church the most they abandon ship.  It makes me sick.

Fellow preachers, do we need to be reminded about the miracle we saw on election night?  For weeks, we were told he had no chance to win.  Have you forgotten how close we came to a nuclear winter called Hillary?

Do we need to be reintroduced to the obvious?  Look at who hates him, and you will find every reason to stand with him.  The same people that hate Israel, hate Trump.  The same people who want to kill Trump, want to kill the unborn.  The same people that want to silence Trump, want to silence the church.

Pastor, his enemies are your enemies.  Those who want to stop his policies, also want to stop your vision.

He tweets.  Get over it!  When virtually every news outlet lies about him…how else will he get the truth out?

He is rough and crude.  So, what?  Draining the swamp in Washington is not the job for your breathy voiced yoga instructor.   Trump is the strong medicine God chose.

He has enraged all the usual suspects:  Teacher’s unions, socialist hippies, gas bag college professors, and all the cuckoo caucuses infesting our halls of government.

I want to remind my esteemed yet timid colleagues our children are getting a nutty education.  Life doesn’t hand out participation trophies.  Life won’t let you retreat to your safe place.  Do you honestly believe that the drivel doled by leftists in the name of “education” will teach hard work, perseverance, and character?

Trump’s determination to make us strong in a hostile world is condemned as “nationalism.”  His campaign to make education rational is condemned as “out of date.”  Only drug addled moonbeams can find fault with common sense.

Our morally bankrupt leaders don’t know how to solve problems.  My generation put a man on the moon—this generation put a man in the girl’s bathroom.   I am not attacking transgender people. I am illustrating how—when it comes to priorities—liberalism rots the brain.  With the life-threatening problems we face they focus on this?

In the next 90 days we will see the most blatant attack—in our history—on everything we value as believers.

The last thing President Trump should feel right now is that he is alone.  He must feel the fervent prayers of the Body of Christ.  He must hear your voice supporting his valiant moves to unwind the snake Obama wrapped around the throat of our democracy.

Dear preacher did you support Trump because of a fad fever?  Are you silent because of the backlash?  If you believe Trump is a miracle, and a type of King Cyrus, then act like it!  Seize this divine opportunity to stand with policies that best reflect our values.  Don’t chicken out now that the heat is on.

I never voted for Trump because I heard some goose-bump prophecy.  I came to my decision in prayer.  I studied history.  I saw us sinking into the same quicksand that ended prior nations.  I looked at our choices and it was crystal clear that Trump was not just the best choice—he was the only choice.  He still is.

When Abraham Lincoln Told America to Pray and Repent

“Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!  It behooves us then, to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.”

 

By the President of the United States of America.

A Proclamation.

Whereas, the Senate of the United States, devoutly recognizing the Supreme Authority and just Government of Almighty God, in all the affairs of men and of nations, has, by a resolution, requested the President to designate and set apart a day for National prayer and humiliation.

And whereas it is the duty of nations as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God, to confess their sins and transgressions, in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord.

And, insomuch as we know that, by His divine law, nations like individuals are subjected to punishments and chastisements in this world, may we not justly fear that the awful calamity of civil war, which now desolates the land, may be but a punishment, inflicted upon us, for our presumptuous sins, to the needful end of our national reformation as a whole People? We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of Heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us!

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It’s a testament to how far we have fallen.  Lincoln’s letter would be deemed a hate crime today.  His wise plea would be met with rage and howling disdain.  Every talk show host would eviscerate it.  Hollywood would have more anger over this letter than they do over Harvey Weinstein.  Professors would call it a tool for the white man to keep people of color on the plantation.

Psychiatrists, citing the 25th Amendment, would scream for the mentally unfit Lincoln to be removed from office.  He would be accused of being a climate change denier for omitting references to the environment.  He would be slurred as Islamophobic for praying to the Christian God.  In short, this document would be banned today. 

Even in the face of unequaled natural disasters, violence, division and danger, the elite of our nation not only refuse to pray, they ridicule those who wish to repent.  This is how far from sanity we have drifted.  May God have mercy on our wicked minds.  

-Mario Murillo

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It behooves us then, to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.

Now, therefore, in compliance with the request, and fully concurring in the views of the Senate, I do, by this my proclamation, designate and set apart Thursday, the 30th. day of April, 1863, as a day of national humiliation, fasting and prayer. And I do hereby request all the People to abstain, on that day, from their ordinary secular pursuits, and to unite, at their several places of public worship and their respective homes, in keeping the day holy to the Lord, and devoted to the humble discharge of the religious duties proper to that solemn occasion.

All this being done, in sincerity and truth, let us then rest humbly in the hope authorized by the Divine teachings, that the united cry of the Nation will be heard on high, and answered with blessings, no less than the pardon of our national sins, and the restoration of our now divided and suffering Country, to its former happy condition of unity and peace.

In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the City of Washington, this thirtieth day of March, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and of the Independence of the United States the eighty seventh.

By the President: Abraham Lincoln
William H. Seward, Secretary of State.

 

THE BATTLE FOR AMERICA STARTS NOW

 

In a masterstroke of perverted genius, Satan has plunged America into chaos.  The interweaving of the lawless media—the anti-god Democratic party—the liberal university propaganda machine—the brainwashing film companies—the dysfunctional Republican Party, and last, but not least, Christianity Incorporated, are crushing the American Spirit.

It is a tapestry of travesty. 

If you thought the election of Donald Trump meant victory…think again.  Not only have we not won the war, we barely won a battle—the battle for America starts now.

Do not listen to any preacher who is doing a victory dance over America.

This is a moment of sober reflection not giddy, celebratory denial.  This is a time of deep soul searching— the emptying of self in the pursuit of divine guidance.

Remember the real victim in this war.  Remember who feels the greatest sense of betrayal.  It is middle Americans.  People who obey the rules, pay taxes and go to church to learn righteousness.

“Silly me”, they say.  “I elected you to repeal and replace Obamacare.  For 7 years you wrote bills to end it.  You get in power, and you do nothing!”

“How stupid am I”,they ask.  “I work three jobs to send my son to college and you melt his mind with self-pity, white guilt, no marketable skills, and a hatred for our faith.”

“Hey pastor”, they say. “I don’t go to church just to feel good—but to become good.”

Until now the war was surreal.  We had the luxury of couching it in hyper-spiritual terminology.  We got away with symbolic intercession.  We were fine with shadow boxing, prophetic flattery, and firing blanks.  But after today, this means war.

Let me be clear: this letter is not for everyone.  It is not for the worrier but the warrior. It is for a remnant.  It is for a holy core untiringly loyal to God.

It is a clarion call of hope.  With God, even the smallest group is the majority.  I don’t care who rejects this message.  I only care about the hearts who can declare without doubt…if God be for us, who can be against us?

How then do you begin to war for America? 

Begin by separating yourself.  The moment you realize you are an eagle in a farmyard full of turkeys…take off!  Swamp gas believers make being alone an improvement.

Once you are free of the toxic, social gravity of Christianity-lite, you will be reunited with forgotten treasures

You will recall your awesome God—a God worthy of total sacrifice—a God who made the weak strong, the confused clear, and common men and women legends.

You can start praying now as you have never prayed in the past.  “…You will not fast as you do this day, to make your voice heard on high.” -Isaiah 58:4. “…The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”-James 5:16

(Photo by Brad Barket/Getty Images)

Remember why you are supporting and praying for our president.  Christians who jumped and the bandwagon during the election are bailing on him now.  Why?  They wanted the easy victory.  They didn’t want flak.

If you want to know why you should stand by Trump it’s easy—look at who hates him and why.   It’s not about Russia.  It’s not about his family.

They hate him because he stands with Israel.

They hate him because he is pro-life.

They hate him because he wants to close the border against those who would kill Americans. 

But, the final reason they hate him should embarrass us: They hate him because he stands with the church against her enemies.  Imagine that!  Believers refuse to defend him even as he is viciously attacked for defending us.

The battle for America starts now.  It starts with brave pastors who will transform safe pulpits into turrets of truth.

It starts with Senators and Representatives getting delivered of the need for self-preservation.

It starts with everyday believers like you and me—hearts set ablaze with a furnace of faith and love of country.

Yes, it is true that the battle has only started…but God has no even begun to fight.

The violence is coming from only one side

The violence is coming from only one side.  The shooting of a Republican politician is a horrifying development but not surprising.  The call to tone down the rhetoric on both sides sounds rational but it is wholly misguided because it assumes there is equal blame on the right and left.

Here is the news:

  James Hodgkinson, 66, died in hospital after being shot by Capitol Police at the baseball field in Virginia 

  He was a staunch Democrat who documented his hatred for President Trump on social media pages

  Hodgkinson moved from his home in Illinois to Virginia two months ago and had been living out of his car

  He has a long criminal history which includes punching a woman in the face in 2006 and disrupting police 

  Steve Scalise, the House Majority Whip, is in a critical condition after being shot by the gunman at 7am

  He was taking part in a GOP practice session with other politicians when Hodgkinson opened fire on them 

  Two Capitol Police officers who were there to protect Scalise bravely returned fire on the gunman 

  They were injured along with lobbyist Matt Mika and congressional staffer Zachary Barth but all are expected to recover

I ask you…are conservatives rioting, burning threatening or shooting Democratic politicians?  Do you see widespread civil unrest fomenting among Trump supporters?  Do conservative comedians hold up bloody heads of Hillary or cheer plays that depict the assassination of Obama?
The left wants to destroy civil discourse.  Democratic leaders use F-bombs in their speeches help win voters.  What kind of mind are you appealing to?  “Hey, I want to vote for that party, they cuss.”
The main reason conservatives don’t cuss or make violent remarks is because of their convictions.  The other big reason is that, unlike the left, they will not get away with anything.  The media runs cover for all incendiary speech from the left.
A liberal can say or do almost anything—and they have.  Madonna said she wants to blow up the White House.  Not one liberal leader condemned her.  Violence, rioting and hate speech is the domain of the left.
Yet, the most innocent remark from a conservative is dissected, reformulated and reworded to be racist, homophobic, islamophobic and all the other labels we are sick of hearing.
To suggest that the shooting was the result of rhetoric on both sides is like telling a rape victim, “you shouldn’t have dressed provocatively.”   Unless we admit that one side is being unfairly targeted, censored and persecuted there will be no justice and violence will escalate.
Look righteously at the situation:  One side can say and do almost anything they want because movies stars, the media, and celebrities don’t like the beliefs of the other side.  That’s not the America our founders had in mind.
The media—if it still had the capacity—should be ashamed.  You don’t exercise a freedom to destroy another freedom.  Freedom of the press is not a club to destroy freedom of speech.  The Democratic party and the media’s tacit approval of dictatorial colleges, riots, and threats of violence is causing this escalation.
Our president is being crucified for things for which there is zero evidence of wrong doing.  The left does not care about the harm it is doing to freedom—the end justifies their means.  All God-fearing people should speak out and be in fervent prayer for this monster to be exposed.

THE AMERICAN MIRACLE: ARE YOU FINALLY READY?

So what if some think I am crazy?  So what if saying “an American miracle”  makes even some Christian leaders mad? I am asked all the time what it would take…so if you are finally ready—if you are willing to leave the turkeys and fly with the eagles—here is what you do…

If you are finally ready

By Mario Murillo

“I wish you would give us an answer for America.”  I hear that a lot!   Oh the answer is out there alright, but you have to be ready.  Many believe that they are ready but they are not.

To be ready means an unshakable passion for change.  The sorcerer tried to buy from Peter the power to impart the Holy Spirit.  Peter said, “You have neither part nor portion in this matter, for your heart is not right in the sight of God” – Acts 8:21. The daily behavior of millions of Christians and pastors prove they are not ready.

If you are playing games you are not ready.  Seeker churches are playing a marketing game.  They will never be a force for change in our culture; unless of course, someone invents a way to have moral awakening without repentance.

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The hyper-emotional churches are not ready either.  They are also playing games.  Fire tunnels and prophetic conferences can–if not balanced into actual soul-sinning–easily degenerate a version of Dungeons and Dragons.  Those who chase blessings and “words” are worse than unready, they are immobilized.  They are play-acting at revival.

Do lost souls, national sin, and the loss of our constitution deeply matter to you?   If they do not, God will not enroll you to save America.  How could He?  If you shy away from reality and say silly things like, “I don’t want to know what is going on, it is too depressing,” then you have no part in the solution.

Here are the people who are ready: Pastors who want to influence the culture more than they want a big church are ready.  Pastors who are passionate for the gifts of the Holy Spirit, and cannot live without winning the lost, are ready.   Christians, who are clear that America will soon die without revival, are ready. What is the most urgent sign that you are ready?  The answer is an unambiguous conviction to pursue revival even if no one else joins you.  God is not waiting for the church.  He will start without them.   All He needs is one willing vessel.

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The one willing vessel will unlock awesome power by confessing, “I will do whatever it takes for however long it takes.”  What makes this idea come alive is something called the Stockdale Paradox.  Here is an excerpt from Good to Great written by Jim Collins: The name refers to Admiral Jim Stockdale, who was the highest ranking United States military officer in the “Hanoi  

Hilton” prisoner-of-war camp during the height of the Vietnam War. Tortured over 20 times during his eight-year imprisonment from 1965 to 1973,

Stockdale lived out the war without any prisoner’s rights, no set release date, and no certainty as to whether he would even survive to see his family again. “Here I am sitting in my warm and comfortable office, looking out over the beautiful Stanford campus on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. I’m getting depressed reading this, and I know the end of the story! I know that he gets out, reunites with his family, becomes a national hero, and gets to spend the later years of his life studying philosophy on this same beautiful campus.

afternoon. I’m getting depressed reading this, and I know the end of the story! I know that he gets out, reunites with his family, becomes a national hero, and gets to spend the later years of his life studying philosophy on this same beautiful campus.

If it feels depressing for me, how on earth did he deal with it when he was actually there and did not know the end of the story?” “I never lost faith in the end of the story,” he said, when I asked him. “I never doubted not only that I would get out, but also that I would prevail in the end and turn the experience into the defining event of my life, which, in retrospect, I would not trade.”

I didn’t say anything for many minutes, and we continued the slow walk toward the faculty club, Stockdale limping and arc-swinging his stiff leg that had never fully recovered from repeated torture. Finally, after about a hundred meters of silence, I asked, “Who didn’t make it out?” “Oh, that’s easy,” he said. “The optimists.” “The optimists? I don’t understand,” I said, now completely confused, given what he’d said a hundred meters earlier. “The optimists. Oh, they were the ones who said, ‘We’re going to be out by Christmas.’ And Christmas would come, and Christmas would go. Then they’d say, ‘We’re going to be out by Easter.’ And Easter would come, and Easter would go. And then Thanksgiving, and then it would be Christmas again. And they died of a broken heart.”

Another long pause, and more walking. Then he turned to me and said, “This is a very important lesson. You must never confuse faith that you will prevail in the end—which you can never afford to lose—with the discipline to confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be.”Blog 3Why is this Paradox so important to the American church right now?  The answer is the last several years.  These are years that shattered Pollyanna doctrines and fluff faith.  We never dreamed it could get this bad this fast. Our version of optimists has left the church.  They have fallen away because of persecution.

The remnant is ready for untold power if it heeds this lesson: Things are bad, really bad; deal with it.  But never, ever lose faith in the arrival of revival.  Embrace the facts no matter how brutal they seem and at the same time believe with all of your might that everything you are doing to see the power of God released on America will be rewarded. When you pray, God will hear.  When you speak out people will listen.  No matter how unpromising your action feels now, keep going because “there is no restraint with God to save by few or to save by many!”  Hallelujah!