"And [they that shall be] of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in." Isaiah 58:12
On my 45th. birthday the Lord told me to rebuild the walls. For those who have heard the Lord speak to them you know what I mean. You are praying to Him, and you ask Him a question or lift up a concern or are just mulling over a situation in His presence and all of a sudden a thought or sentence just drops into your mind out of nowhere. Nowhere in the sense that it didn't follow, build upon or seem like the next thought in a natural progression of your own thoughts.
So I'm lying in bed and saying something like, You know Lord, I am seriously middle-aged now and what would you like me to do with my life at this point? "Rebuild the walls". Boom. He answered so quickly that it stunned me. No elaboration. But it sounded familiar, so I went scurrying to my bible, and eventually found the verse quoted above. WOW! What walls? Well, the verse talks about the old waste places, and raising up the foundations of many generations.
Oh, now this is exciting. Could it be that our Lord is wanting us (because you know I can't repair and rebuild these walls all by myself) to go back and champion all that was ever good and true and right that our civilization rests upon? Champion as in "live it" and talk about it freely. Maybe our dismay at the sorry state of morality and human behavior in our society is not just reactionary or nostalgic, unrealistic, and wrong. Maybe as a civilization we have lost so much of what is noble and righteous that we are like Israel of old during the time that the books of the law were lost. Even the memory of them had faded by the time they were rediscovered in the temple. When the king read them he was devastated to see how far astray he and the nation had gone. He now had a frame of reference, a context and something with which to compare society.
Certain words and terms such as "lady", "gentleman", "virtue", "modesty" and one's "Christian duty" have for some time been mocked and held in derision, considered quaint and hopelessly outdated. For most of our country's history, however, these terms were held in high esteem, were considered ideals to strive for, and in that striving a free and righteous nation was forged. Even the old prejudices and societal constructs, slavery and the caste system were held up to the scrutinizing light of justice and freedom, and became a thing of the past.
What pains me most as time progresses is realizing that people living now are less likely to make fun of these ideals as they are to simply draw a blank when they hear them. They are foreign ideas for which people have no frame of reference. They are unfamiliar, and therefore irrelevant concepts to the average person in the Western World.
Even the Church herself has crumbling walls. Some are even down in the basement, chipping away and setting off little explosives around the foundation. Jesus Christ, the foundation and cornerstone, the Word of God Himself, is being "spun" by the new "enlightened" way of interpreting Scripture and morals. The new enlightenment, however, is merely the old paganism in modern garb and it is leading many down its broad, smoothly paved, modern path to destruction.
I contend that as Christians living in free countries we have a solemn duty to be a light to others. In our lives and in our homes we should be trying, with God's help, to live sound and blameless lives. And now I'm going to have to get a little graphic.
Mothers, do your little children really need to see your butt cheeks hanging out of your shorts when you bend over? Young ladies, could you stop for a second and please listen to your own delicate, feminine voice as you spew out the F word like it was nothing? How about everybody's favorite expression these days: "This or that (you fill in the blanks) SUCKS". You are taking an expression which refers to giving a man oral sex every time you utter that expression.
Ladies, do you wear tight jeans and show cleavage when you go out for the day? How about when you go to church? Do you care that maybe you are tempting a married man or a young man who is trying to keep himself under control?
How about our phone manners, our driving manners, the respect we show our spouses? How do we react when our child is disciplined at school? When he or she gets a grade that we disagree with. I am talking primarily to women because I do not wish to try and take authority over a man. A lot of these little things apply to both sexes though. We are de-civilizing ourselves in the present world and I do not presume to judge, but can only shudder at what we are storing up for ourselves in the next. Think also of these little ones, whom our Savior warns us most sternly we are not to lead astray.
I speak as the chiefest of sinners. I have not been the best wife, mother or citizen, or child of God. But I want to be; and with God's help I can improve while I have breath.
What else can we do to repair the breach, to be restorers of paths to dwell in? I would love to hear others' thoughts and ideas.