“If you think Jesus should be allowed back in schools, click “Like” and Share!”
“New Law in Kentucky allows Bible to be taught in school. Do you Agree or Disagree?”
“God was kicked out of schools! It’s time we let Him back in!”
For some reason, memes and posts like this have started showing back up in my various social media streams. It seems like this particular melody gets sung every 6-12 months by some Christians and the chorus of “likes” and “shares” and “I agree” comments fill to social media outlets.
But I do not join the chorus. And I don’t think it is advantageous for any of us to do so.
“Why? Don’t you think God should be allowed in public schools? Don’t you believe in the Bible? Don’t you think that prayer should be present in our educational system?”
Even typing those words made me cringe on the inside. Because laden within them and within the memes and posts above is this underlying assumption: God isn’t there. That somehow a law or a custom or a man-made institution is capable of retraining or inhibiting our God, our King of Kings, our Emmanuel.
We are getting ready to enter into one of the most joyous and anticipated seasons in the Christian calendar; the season of Advent, leading to Christmas. In this season, we spend days focusing on one thing – the birth of Christ. And throughout the season we remind each other that we have a God that is not far off in some distant place waiting for us to come to Him. No! We serve a God who came to us, wrapped in our frail flesh, and walked among us, promising to be our Emmanuel – God WITH us – forever and ever.
During this season we marvel at the miracle of our Savior’s birth, foretold by prophets and angels, and witnessed by shepherds and kings.
We tell our children that because of this, they can rest assured that God is always with them, always present, always showing Himself strong on their behalf.
We even think ahead to the next big celebration of Easter and we explain that through Christ’s birth and death as fully man and fully God, we have been given a Way into eternity ourselves and we will never be separated from God, ever, for all time.
And then… we post memes that say we kicked Him out. We bemoan the lack of His presence in our classrooms. We act as though our Immanuel is not “God with us” but “God with us when we say it’s okay.”
How sad for us and how confusing for our children. That in one moment we speak with such faith and confidence and in the next we mourn as though we have been left abandoned.
Oh friends, wouldn’t it be much better to acknowledge the truth? That God CANNOT be “kicked out” of this world, no matter how hard humanity might try to do so? That our God thrives in places where men and women have tried to push Him out and silence His church? That our God isn’t just present in our schools, but in prisons, concentration camps, Roman amphitheaters and arenas, in the darkest persecutions and even in the greatest prosperity. God can’t be banned from earth. That battle was fought and won thousands of years ago. He is here to stay. He is Immanuel. He is God WITH us! ”
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