Friday, November 4, 2016

Bunkers of Fear or Bridges of Hope

We are at a turning point in our national history. The direction we finally take at that turning point will not come from a perceived victory in a political battle.  It will be the outcome of the highest form of spiritual warfare. How we wage this battle will determine our future and record our history.

I have had the honor to visit many nations, each with a diverse history. One of the more unusual histories was found in the nation of Albania. Albania was a very restricted and closed nation within the old Communist Bloc. Today, the nation is reinventing itself through trade and diplomacy.

Under Communist rule, Albania was led by Enver Hoxha. Hoxha was a very a repressive and paranoid leader who governed one of the most depressed and poverty-stricken nations in the world. Hoxha used fear to control his people trying to convince them they had it so good the outside world was about to invade Albania at any moment and take their meager portion.

As a result of this delusion, a campaign began to construct defensive concrete bunkers to repel the invaders. To this day, scattered throughout the landscape of Albania, are thousands of military bunkers strategically pointing outward toward the borders of the nation in preparation for an imagined invasion. In 1983 there were 173,371 of these bunkers in a nation with a landmass approximately the size of New Hampshire. Many of the bunkers still remain to this day.

When I recall the mental image of the bunkers I saw in Albania twenty years ago, they remind me of where our nation finds itself at this point in our history. There is a great deal of suspicion coursing through nation. Bunkers of distrust and fear are being erected in each political camp facing outward toward the opposing party. This is being fed by the seductive words being offered to us by a political spirit. God is asking us to build bridges, not bunkers. When fear is allowed to run rampant imaginary enemies created by our partisan politics cross our mental borders blinding us to the invasion of the real enemy - fear.

There will come a day when the remains of our fear will appear to those who study our history like the abandoned concrete bunkers I saw each time I visited Albania. Each of us have limited time and resources. Use those gifts wisely to build bridges of hope, not bunkers of fear. The bridges you build will be used by God to usher in the hope required to accomplish God’s will in our nation and in every nation on Earth. The bridges of our hope or the bunkers of our fear will become the record of our history. The choice of that history is ours to write.

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