That’s how many journalists have died this year reporting on terrorism and the wars around the world.
James Foley and Steven Sotloff beheaded. How horrendous. We don’t even want to think about it. But their mothers, fathers, siblings, and loved ones have to.
It’s funny that, as Christians, we sometimes talk about giving our lives for our faith–and yet here we see men and women who have given their lives for what they believe in–the news and the belief that everyone has a right to know what’s going on in the world.
I’ve criticized the media because so many elements of it seem slanted, liberal and biased. But I can’t fault men and women who put their lives on the line each day to bring us news–news that we need because the hatred of others (for whatever reason) is spilling blood overseas and one day may spill blood here in America again.
A couple weeks ago, two top military advisers said the bloodshed, the terrorism is containable if something is done now. Not later, they warned. Later could be too late.
Can I challenge all of us? To stop spending so much time in useless pursuits, stop watching TV for a little, stop entertaining ourselves with whatever is tickling our fancy. And pick up the Word of God, read our Bibles and pray? Because God is trying to wake us up.
Don’t be like the people of Noah’s time, don’t be like the kingdoms of Israel and Judah. God tried to warn them, but they refused to turn from the junk in their lives back to him. He pleaded with them again and again:
“Return unto me, said Jehovah of hosts, and I will return unto you.” Zech 1:3
“…return to me,” declares the LORD. “If you put your detestable idols out of my sight and no longer go astray, and if in a truthful, just and righteous way you swear, ‘As surely as the LORD lives,’ then the nations will invoke blessings…” Jer 4:1-2
“If you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.’ Neh 1:9
“Return to Me with all your heart, with fasting, weeping and mourning; And rend your heart and not your garments.” Now return to the LORD your God, For He is gracious and compassionate, Slow to anger, abounding in lovingkindness And relenting of evil.” Joel 2:12-13
It is not for ourselves we do this, but for our children and grandchildren, our neighbors, our brothers and sisters. Turn off your TV’s, your video games, and return to Him.