the real problem with americans

Yesterday I was scheduled to speak at church about my experience in Palestine this past spring. You see my mind was completely absorbed by the ideas of speaking from the heart, eloquently and efficiently within my time frame of 4 minutes but I was also thinking and praying for the respondents. The people that choose to engage in what I have to say is my audience. Yes, I am speaking to all of those in the sanctuary, because they are all respondents but I am more importantly speaking to the hearts of those engaged. I only had four minutes to captivate, interest and motivate. Some would say this isn’t fair, or ignorant that I wasn’t trying to engage with all of the people in the room. The problem with that is I believe God is in control, and only He has the power to change hearts, to open the eyes of the blind. So although I pray earnestly before speaking for God move on the hearts of the audience for eyes to be opened, It is still God the Holy Spirit who moves in the hearts of those He wants to effect there in that room. God moves on certain hearts and it was those hearts I was speaking to that morning. This is only the beginning, that’s just where I was you see. While sitting in the second row listening to Pastor Chris, an interim pastor, my mind, heart and soul were not prepared to or expecting to engage in the message shortly after speaking. My mind was still running over what I had just said, hardly prepared and about what I would say in the next service. All of the sudden I caught myself deep in thought in midst of conviction. Chris was speaking on the four pillars of faith. The third pillar being “an attitude of gratitude” was not really what hit me, it was how even though we, by nature, have a sinful heart; we still have the ability to choose. With the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ we can choose life over death in all circumstances. I believe the point was an attitude of thanksgiving, but what actually convicted me was my lack of confidence in the Spirit or just apathetic attitude to take advantage of the opportunity to be helped choosing life. So often we, as sinful, selfish humans want to do things not only our own way but alone. We don’t want help, we don’t want to accept free things, because we don’t want to BE somebody‘s charity. We want to earn everything because we want to BUILD our dignity, we want to be able to boast about the work we have accomplished. I’m fully convinced that American’s don’t struggle with greed, but that we struggle with the desire to be important, to be known as something of value. When we work hard we get paid, we are able to buy stuff that somehow shows some sort of value. Somehow this big amount of stuff seems to represent value, and the more stuff you have the more money you must have and the more money you have, the harder you must have worked. THAT is what American’s really want. They want people to think they are hard workers, or smart or brilliant, or creative or innovative. They want to be known as something far above the rest. THAT is our problem, how then are we as a nation called a Christian nation when last time I checked, most people I know are not Christ followers, a lot of them don’t even know what that means. American’s have lost sight of what value really is, they have been deceived to think that value comes from being different. I believe that our true value makes us all the same. We all struggle with the same things, we all experience the same emotions and we call can be set free by the blood Jesus spilled on calvary.

so I’ve been coming to the conclusion that not only are we innately sinful in areas often that others dont struggle with, we have addictions in all sorts of ways in our flesh. We struggle with all sorts of things that are continually trying to kill us. It’s a terrible disease, especially when we feed it by choosing death instead of life on a daily basis.

Life is only through Jesus Christ and that is a VERY hard thing i think. Naturally I want to choose the selfish option when asked to do something but with the spirit of Jesus Christ I have the ability to choose the unselfish option, the loving option, the option best for someone else, its humilty. It’s dying to self. It’s giving up the right to feel entitled, the right of what we think we deserve. Its submitting to something greater than ourselves for a greater purpose. Its not earning anything, its losing our dignity everyday for something greater. THIS is why the Christian life isn’t appealing to some, ISNT enticing to many and Certainly INST easy to any.

Choosing life is something that will ALWAYS be satisfying, even if not in the moment. The Christian life has never been about the moment. Its been about the timelessness of eternity


  1. Keep writing Samm. Your thoughts will continue to deepen and your focus will be sharpened. I can see from your writing that you are on an incredible path with the Lord that will take you to many unexpected places, some in your mind and others here in this world. Your journey is going to be filled with unexpected turns, and you will overcome every juggernaut you experience along the way. Providing you with a deepening of your character and an appreciation of the richness of life. Pursue today and every day with the passion you have been given and you will never have any regrets.

  2. We have to talk, sammy!.. you have no idea how amazing this is to read your entry today. It is so timely, and Angie and I have struggled with the same thinking. I want so much more than what the ‘church’ is saying today. I found myself stepping out of the 4 walls of the church building 3 years ago, and I don’t want to look back. Fellowship is still crucial, but I couldn’t have it both ways anymore. Let’s just say that you and your dad still rubbed off on me. The burn in my chest to do the “greater things” than Jesus did is what I breathe for. I am starting to see what it means to be IN CHRIST for the first time in 20+ years. The Holy Ghost gave me this to ponder on…. To be IN CHRIST, is to be “God’s Child, Man’s Servant and the devil’s master”. I see it’s so true now in the Word. If Christ came to take out the devil and his evil works, and then lives in me, why am I not doing the same? Sin abounds but grace abounds for the believer all the more. Many are lost and going to hell everyday… I won’t ever make a pew seat warm again with my behind. Never. I go as HE commanded… to go and make disciples… we need what the church hasn’t provided yet, but by way of the “superstar” christians.. we need the boldness to preach the word, yes, but there is more.. much much more!! we need the power to heal the sick, raise the dead and cast out devils… Mark 16:18… I saw that, and I am desperate to see the whole Body walk in it, because the world is sick and tired of the yammering we do, and don’t show it…. what good are we to any other “religion” unless we showcase God’s power in us by love to the world. The field is white! ~~ I remember your dad saying that to me all the time. God knows how much I miss him so… Love you so much, Sammy… I mean it.. we need to talk very soon. call us at home or send me a message on FB.
    ~ Your big brother in Jesus


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