Phyllis Beveridge Nissila
Is It “What Goes Around Comes Around” Time for America?
Forward and backward, like a palindrome, today’s date put as 1/21/21 (the day after Inauguration Day here in the United States) reminds me of the expression “what goes around comes around.”
To put it another way, the numbers illustrate a kind of “wrap around,” beginning to end, end to beginning, that, like the expression, come back around to meet, and seal, the “ring”.
With no exit.
In the case of America, how long did we really think certain sins, for lack of a better term, could continue before the evil threading through our culture and our government circled back around to bite us?
For the most egregious example, consider the evil caused by the legalized slaughter of the innocents.
For another example, observe the evil that chips away at our God-given rights to free expression. In just this past year alone, think of how many heady young tech lords have been scrambling to, well, lord it over us by arbitrarily banning freedom of speech based on political affiliation.
For yet another example, and the one that prompted this post, consider the evils of a socialist-styled government, the kind of government that inevitably fails–and that we’ve been warned about by innumerable refugees from other failed socialist-styled nations (see 3 testimonies here) who have seen its markers here–and now, given yesterday’s inauguration, its pending influence at our topmost levels of power.
For there is always hope for those who turn from sin to God.
One of the best national examples of this is how America dealt with slavery–the ultimate demise of which began first in the pulpits, consciences, and writings of certain of the nation’s God-fearing founders.
On the personal level, there is this for any day: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” No matter how late the hour. Here is some encouragement for both newcomers and workers already in the field.
But if many Americans now subscribe to a post-religious worldview and are thus devoid of a solid foundation of justice and truth, well, we have made ourselves subject to any political whim and fancy.
If we turn away from our Judeo-Christian path, we stumble away from mental and spiritual sure-footing and are more easily led by any persuasive or fearful Pied Piper who studies our vulnerabilities and plays his or her propaganda pipe well.
To put it yet another way, as the specter of totalitarianism now (officially) looms large in what some Americans as of yesterday, noon, call our former republic, the question is how as believers shall we now think and act?
Those who put a tenuous hope in the world’s goals and follow their own gods will think and do what they always do, often leaving a trail of blood and tears behind them on the quest for money and power. But not us as we put our eternal hope in Christ.
We have a different mission.
Ultimately, of course, people of faith understand that the good will overcome the evil. We understand the true meaning of an existential call to arms spiritually, mentally, and physically.
But most importantly, we understand in these United States, as perhaps never before, the need to stay close to our own Commander in Chief Who is also our Commander in Faith.
But let’s hope the meantime isn’t more of a mean time than it already is…
In all such historical periods, however, there’s a Psalm for keeping one’s mind, emotions, and spirit clear and strengthened. Actually, there are two: Psalm 121 pointing to the end result, you might say, and Psalm 91 offering help for the interim.
Psalms (“hymns“), like all the other genres of writing that comprise the anthology of 66 religious texts known as the Bible, serve to both inspire and guide God’s people, like the battle songs of old.
They also serve as the antidote to propaganda–which is designed to confuse, distract, and disperse (not to mention demoralize).
Let’s fast forward to the end result, first. Note: Israel, cited in this psalm, stands also for all who put their faith and trust in God in any age where it seems evil has won the battle.
For in the eternal view where there is no time to slow the motion, God has already won the war.
PSALM 121 (to the end game)
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.
3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.
6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
7 The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul.
8 The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.
Psalm 91 (for the interim)
He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
2 I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.
3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence.
4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler.
5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday.
7 A thousand shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it shall not come nigh thee.
8 Only with thine eyes shalt thou behold and see the reward of the wicked.
9 Because thou hast made the Lord, which is my refuge, even the most High, thy habitation;
10 There shall no evil befall thee, neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.
12 They shall bear thee up in their hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder: the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.
14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
15 He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.
16 With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation.
Strategies and A Gift
First, the gift: for a series of devotionals based on the verses of Psalm 91 featuring several anecdotes about how, exactly, God has literally inspired, helped, and saved people also facing challenging circumstances, see this free gift of encouragement.
Next, the strategies: see here for a list of posts written over several years devoted to not only spiritual but also practical “boots on the ground” strategies cited from both religious and secular texts, manuals, treatises, and articles.
You might say the posts were inspired in the lead-up to where both prophecy and world history, repeating itself, have indicated America has been heading for some time now. I will be featuring some of these in future posts now that we live in such a different world.
Because, as they say, we’re not in Kansas anymore.
As you carry on, I hope these will encourage and strengthen you.
For no matter the turning point here on 1/21/21, it is God’s plans, gifted us in prophecy and activated in real time, that prevail as He carries on for all with eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts to yield to His knowledge, wisdom, comfort, and guidance in every Year of Our Lord.
Plus, at the conclusion of the next prophetic stage of evil we still have this promise from Jesus citing the close of the so-called years of “Jacob’s Trouble” coming up soon, as many discern:
And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened. (Matthew 24;22)
But back to here and now, we might want to keep our seatbelts fastened and our eyes, as the man said, on the prize.
God be with us.
More to follow.