When we arrived at Chick-fil-a to show our support today, this is what we saw. I saw many similar pictures on facebook at other locations.
A week and a half ago I wrote about how much backlash you get when you take a stand for righteousness (What does it take to shut you up? What Sandusky, the batman shooter and Brad Pitt's mom have in common.) even down to death threats. The next day I heard about the Chick-fil-a firestorm and not many days after the Masterpiece cake shop boycott (they refused to make a cake for a gay wedding and have received more than 1,000 angry messages). But today (and yesterday when we went to get a cake from the cake shop) tears were brought to my eyes.
Let me explain why this impacted me so much. Austin and I have many non-Christian facebook friends since we do college ministry (I would say 1/3 of our ministry is actually done on facebook) and sometimes it gets pretty crazy. Awhile back the President of the atheist club (who would sometimes go by a girls name and had a tattoo of Jesus crucified upside down with his head cut off with 666 written on it. No joke!) would maliciously slander Austin and I saying the most horrible things about us on a regular basis on facebook (over a long period of time). Having 80 some comments back and forth meant a lot of people got to read the thread where we often got to share the gospel (and Austin's humble attitude became evident). We are use to being cut with words though it always hurts. We are use to having to stand up for righteousness and being called names for it. Dare I say this has become somewhat normal, though it shakes me every time.
But today I got to see the other side. I got to see hundreds and hear of thousands that aren't letting these men go through it alone. People have stood up to say "I'm with you" Chick-fil-a's Dan Cathy. And Jack Phillips of the cake shop said he's received more business and over 3,000 emails of encouragement. That is just so powerful.
When I hear of reinforcements like that, it gives me visual evidence that God's got our back. It gives so much hope and encouragement that we're not alone in standing for what the Bible calls right. (After all, it's not about our opinion, it's standing with what God says in His Word.)
There are two other ladies that wow me. At the risk of their life, they do what's right. Exodus 1:8-20 tells us about these incredibly brave midwives, Shiphrah and Puah. A new king that didn't know Joseph came to power in Egypt. He freaked out because there was so many Israelites and feared they would take over. So he made them slaves. Now that just is confusing to me. How in the world did the Israelites just succumb to that!? How does one person go up to another and say, now you're my slave and they say 'Ok'. Crazy! Anyway, like the principle of persecution (a term I just made up to put a name on a very real concept) when you smash it, it grows. Like the early church that caused the church to scatter and take the gospel to the world. The more the king persecuted the Israelites, the more numerous they got.
The king's fear, bitterness and jealousy kept growing and led to death (just as sin does). He ordered that Shiphrah and Puah kill every Hebrew boy that was born. Could you imagine being told to do that!? But this is what is said about these ladies, "The midwives, however, feared God and did not do what the king of Egypt had told them to do; they let the boys live." The result, "So God was kind to he midwives and the people increased and became even more numerous." All the people were blessed because these ladies feared God and did what was right.
I like them!
Oh Lord, thank you for letting me see so many stand for righteousness today. Please continue to grow Your people into Shiphrah's and Puah's.