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Tuesday, June 9, 2020

God's WINNOWING of America

"In God We Trust" is stenciled in a wall at South Park Elementary in Rapid City, South Dakota in this July 23, 2019, file photo. (Adam Fondren/Rapid City Journal via AP) ** FILE **
“In God We Trust” is stenciled in a wall at South Park Elementary in Rapid City, South Dakota in this July 23, 2019, file photo. (Adam Fondren/Rapid City Journal via AP) ** FILE **

Cheryl K. Chumley

Sane people are surveying the landscape of America right now and wondering, what the heck has happened to this great country?
The wicked, meanwhile, are reveling in the madness.
And thus the battle lines have been drawn. Call this God’s winnowing of America — a time when He takes a look at His people, decides He doesn’t like what He sees and allows for a time of great testing to separate the good from evil, the worthwhile from worthless, the usable from unusable.
The coronavirus; the death of George Floyd; the collapse of the U.S. economy; the rise of the thug forces on city streets; the calls for defunding of police, leading to eventual destruction of law and order; the defacement and removal of our nation’s most symbolically important monuments and statues; the widespread looting of businesses; the targeted shootings of police officers; the masking of Americans’ faces; the opening of doors for mass mail-in voting, meaning mass voter fraud that favors the Democrats — these are all instances and examples of strife, struggle, trial and testing the country has faced and continues to face.
All that’s after three-plus years of Russia collusion — found to be false; Ukraine collusion — found to be false; and resist, resist, resist movements in the streets against key members of President Donald Trump’s administration and political party.
And all that after Hillary Clinton, shockingly to some, lost the 2016 presidential election.
Trump’s administration has been anything but smooth sailing. But he didn’t start the fire. He simply outed what’s been a burning ember for some time — but such a slow burning ember that its heat has gone largely unnoticed. Or, more to truth, largely ignored.
The 401(k) plans have beckoned, dontcha know.
We’ve forgotten our greatness. We’ve turned from the source of our greatness. We’re paying a price.
This country, this country that was founded on a core principle of rights coming from God, not government, opened its figurative doors with a Mayflower Compact that pledged, “for the glory of God and advancement of the Christian faith,” to “plant the first colony” and govern in harmony.
It was that spirit of self-governance, determination to self-rule and recognition of higher heavenly authority that led to the forging of America’s Declaration of Independence and Constitution. It was that Mayflower Compact influence, and the influences of the Separatists aboard the Mayflower who created our nation’s first governing document, that etched in marble the core facet of America’s greatness: that individual rights are granted by God, and government has no authority to strip them away.
But God-given isn’t just a blessing.
It’s a responsibility.
If Americans want a country where rights come from above, at birth, then Americans must recognize the one from above as leader and act accordingly. But have we?
In 2017, Anne Graham Lotz, the daughter of worldwide known evangelist Billy Graham, spoke at the National Day of Prayer of the “national sins” — among, pursing false gods; forgetting God as the true source of blessings, including material wealth; living wantonly and wallowing in drugs, sex, alcohol, entertainment, fleshly pleasures; and failing to fear His authority.
True. All true. But let’s not forget abortion.
Let’s not forget gay marriage.
Let’s not forget willfully destroying families and youth with LGBTQ messages and movements.
God will not be mocked — particularly by a nation that uses His name as a motto. So here we are, facing times of great stress and testing and tension, nationally and individually. 
“His winnowing fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing floor, and to gather the wheat into his granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire,” reads Luke 3:17, of the coming of Jesus — one of dozens of Bible passages about the concept of God’s winnowing.
Spiritually speaking, this explains the chaos in America — or, more to point, the crumbling of America. What to do? How to deal? It’s the job of the believer to stand fast, and spread the word. The winnowing is always with a purpose of repentance, sanctification and saving.
Besides, as 2 Corinthians reminds: Afflictions for believers are only “but for a moment.” 

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