Safe Zone is probably a term you’ve heard an awful lot in our news and media today. Gay, cross-dressing, and confused teens are herding together in these ‘safe zones’ at high schools and college campuses. Rainbow flags and banners are being held high, parading through the streets of cities declared as ‘safe zones’—lovers of everyone and everything. But I’ve noticed, where are the safe zones for the brothers and sisters of Christ?
These wonderful and accepting safe havens have their doors open wide for anyone who comes, as long as they don’t start spreading hate. But according to social media today ‘hate’ is described as anyone who doesn’t desperately love and accept absolutely everything about you. So what side of the door does that leave us Christians on? Where are the Christian safe-zones?
The answer is: there aren’t any.
We can huddle together behind the walls of a church or gather in a community center. We can send our children to private Christian schools or home-school them. We can band together and pretend the horrible, sinful outside world does not exist but that is not a safe-zone, that is a hiding place.
You cannot avoid the festering sore that our country has become. You cannot hide from the sin that is praised on our television screens and paraded through our streets today nor can you avoid the ridicule from standing against such sins.
Christians need to stop whining about trivial things and start focusing on moving forward in the faith. Who cares if you get made fun of for being Christian? If you get discriminated against? If you get bullied or fired or even threatened?
Jesus told us in John 15:18 NIV “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first.”
It pains me to see policies being introduced that could hinder our freedom of worship in America. I get frustrated every time a political figure—our President included—gets criticized for supporting Christian values. And I can’t stand seeing our values, ethics, and beliefs being smeared in our entertainment industry. But I have realized our country is broken beyond repair. The US has outright rejected God and in doing so, they have rejected the Body of Christ as well. I am pained by the mistreatment of Christians in the US, but I am no longer surprised by it.
Please do not be confused; I am not saying you should give up hope in America. I’m not saying Christians should stop fighting for their rights, representation, or respect in our society today. There are still many in this country who are lost and are actively seeking help. There are many who need to see Christians standing proud and strong even though we face many trials. I don’t want anyone to give up, I want us to begin fighting in other places.
While Christians in America are bullied and made fun of, they are beaten and killed in other countries. We can sit and whine about religious freedom in America or we can focus our efforts in places that are much worse than ours. I understand that defending persecuted Christians in hostile nations may not be every Believers true calling but I’m not asking you to quit your job and move to the Middle East. I’m asking you to begin to say prayers for those who suffer in other countries. We need to stop focusing so much on fighting for rights and instead fight for lives, fight for souls.
You may be able to find places of comfort for Believers and sinners alike in America but there is no such thing as a ‘safe zone’ in some countries. There are places where saying the name of Jesus aloud in public is punishable by death. Think about those Christians and the battle they face next time you want to get angry or upset because someone called you a Bible Thumper.
Think about what truly matters. Do as Jesus advised in Matthew 10:14 NIV “If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet.”
It’s important that we don’t forget about the lost souls in America but it’s also important to realize when it is time to shake the dust off your feet and move on. There are entire countries full of Believers who need our help. You may not be able to physically or financially support them, but a prayer is more precious than either of those. Please do not forget our persecuted brethren. As the Bible instructs us in Hebrews 13:3 NIV “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.”