An Egyptian political science professor has announced that with Allah’s help, “Israel will be annihilated” by 2013. He has also called for any Israeli to be shot and killed on the spot. France and Britain are discussing military intervention in Syria. And the United Nations is reporting that Iran has doubled its capacity to produce uranium needed for nuclear weapons.
Closer to home, Hurricane Isaac has left more than 700,000 without power; nearly 150 people have been rescued from floods. Jobless claims were higher than expected this week. And stock markets fell yesterday to a four-week low on concerns about the euro zone.
In a day of conflict abroad and fears at home, is this the time for atheism in America? The National Atheist Party thought so. Following on the heels of the Republican and Democratic National Conventions, they announced a massive rally for October 5 and 6 in Boston. Troy Boyle, the group’s founder, promised that this would be “our biggest and best public event” and would display the growing prominence and popularity of atheism in our country.
However, the atheists’ convention has just been cancelled due to lack of funds. Boyle admitted that if they went ahead with the convention, it would bankrupt their organization. Of course, he is pledging that their 2013 meeting will be “a solid and better organized success.”
Contrast the three conventions. At last night’s Republican gathering, featuring Mitt Romney’s acceptance speech and Clint Eastwood’s “surprise” appearance, the passion in the hall was obvious and remarkable. I have no doubt that the Democratic Party’s event will generate great enthusiasm among its attenders as well. By contrast, had you heard about the Atheists’ national meeting before reading this essay?
I find significant hope here. As you know, I have been praying and working for moral and spiritual awakening in our nation for many years. An interviewer once asked me if there is a common factor in all awakenings through history. My answer: “Desperation.” As Mother Teresa noted, “You’ll never know Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have.” God redeems suffering by using it to reveal his sufficiency.
A Japanese poet wrote, “My barn having burned to the ground, I can now see the moon.” With our barns burning around us, will you join me in praying for our nation to turn to the Son?