I hope that many of you watched both the Democratic National Convention (DNC) and the Republican National Convention (RNC). I want to contrast the tone of the DNC with the tone of the RNC and pray you don't think I'm being political.
I'm just telling you what I saw and heard and where I think God is taking some things.
At the DNC, I heard few if any references to God. By contrast, at the RNC, there was prayer openly and unapologetically offered in the name of Jesus. Throughout, there were acknowledgements of God and testimonies to His influence such that at times I could have thought I was in a revival meeting.
On the closing night, Alice Johnson, a Black woman, testified in tears to her conversion and transformation in Jesus. She had been sentenced to life in prison for a nonviolent drug offense and was thanking the president for commuting her sentence and releasing her from prison to rebuild her life and reunite with her grandchildren.
On Friday, the president signed a full pardon for her in the Oval Office and followed it with a powerful prayer by a Christian pastor. She sat weeping with joy and gratitude as she clutched the certificate of pardon to her chest while her face glowed with the presence of the Lord.
In his acceptance speech, the president stated loudly and clearly, "In America, we don't place our trust in career politicians, but in Almighty God." No one was ashamed to proclaim the name of Jesus.
Democrats did little more than focus on America's remaining injustices, as if we are a profoundly evil nation that needs to be radically restructured. They fanned the flames of racial divisions and hatred and focused on seeking to make people afraid of Donald Trump, while at the RNC, ordinary people—not a parade of celebrities as at the DNC—who came from all races and all walks of life celebrated what is right with our nation.
Black, white, Hispanic, Cuban and more lifted up our ideals, our freedoms and our opportunities. I saw them all standing as one, honoring one another. The RNC fed hope and optimism about the future as people testified with real stories to the opportunities this nation has provided them and how this administration cares for real people.
But perhaps the most significant thing I witnessed was the tone of the president's speech. The pundits thought that the president wasn't as dynamic as he could have/should have been in his acceptance speech. They spoke of the lack of bite in his presentation. They said it was kind of flat. What I saw and perceived was that he was less recklessly bombastic and in-your-face than he has been. I saw that he was much more presidential with no name-calling or insulting. It was a calm and reasoned presentation befitting the office he holds.
I have seen a growing change in the president's demeanor in recent days that I believe has come in response to our prayers for an inward change in his character as he shifted in his acceptance speech from name-calling and insulting his enemies to a more calm and presidential countenance. Donald Trump is changing and being humbled, just as God showed me he would be.
If Donald Trump is reelected, it will result in another several years of governmental favor for both the church and Israel. We will see an economic resurgence similar to the three years that have led up to this fourth year of crisis, but we must use it wisely and diligently to strengthen our faith, our covenant bonds, our churches, our intimacy with Jesus and our willingness to flow with His Spirit wherever He may lead.
I sense that another crisis, perhaps worse, will come in the next three to seven years, and we need to be ready for it. Multitudes will suffer devastation and hurt, even in the midst of an economic resurgence and especially in the crisis to come. We need to be ready for a harvest of souls—ready with healing resources and the love and power of God for redemption and restoration of broken lives.
Meanwhile, prayer is vital and strategically crucial at least through Nov. 3 and then beyond. We are engaged in the most significant spiritual battle since the Civil War. Ephesians 6:12 says " For our fight is not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, and against spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places."
Loren Sandford is an author, musician and the founder and senior pastor of New Song Church and Ministries in Denver, Colorado. He has a bachelor's degree in music and a Master of Divinity from Fuller Theological Seminary. In addition to pastoring, Sandford has an international teaching and worship ministry. Married since 1972, he and his wife, Beth, have two daughters and one son. They live in Denver, Colorado.
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