living under a rock...

This past weekend has been hyped by A LOT of news! If you were one of the fanatic few (23.8 MILLION) that woke up at 4:00 A.M. on Friday to watch the "Royal Wedding", you were able to see the real life, once in a life time, fairy tale come true! It was a beautiful wedding ceremony that almost half of the world watched. Talk about pressure. This, of course, left the news reals BUZZING for the weekend.

Then, if you are like me and watch "Celebrity Apprentice, you saw the HUGE announcement last night. At first, it was secret. The bottom of the screen read, "Please be prepared for an important message from President Obama regarding an undisclosed topic." Then, right before we find out who was fired on Celebrity Apprentice, we see the news pop up. I told my wife that it has to do with two things: 1. We are about to open war up on Libya or 2. We have captured or killed Osama Bin Laden. (I, of course, was right.)

Unless you have been living under a rock, you have PROBABLY heard the news that Osama Bin Laden was killed. Soon after the announcement, you could flip over to ESPN for Sunday Night Baseball to hear Mets and Phillies fans chanting USA. People outside the White House were singing the national anthem. The main idea was that this truly was a win for the United States. Bin Laden got what was coming to him. You reap what you sew. Karma is a b...well you get the idea.

However, I sat up, watching the news last night, and was thinking to myself, "Sure this is great, but what next?" As I was in and out of sleep, I began to toss and turn over the images and thoughts that were raging through my head. How can we be celebrating the death of someone? Why is everyone so happy? And here is where my controversy will start: I started thinking to myself, that Osama Bin Laden was a great leader!

I will let the anger settle. Done yet? Let me continue on with my RADICAL thought process; You see, I am not here to spark debate about war, politics or anything of the sort. I am simply asking the question, a man as radical and extreme as Osama Bin Laden was, why can't we lead like him? OF COURSE he was leading for the wrong reasons. He helped orchestrate the killing of thousands of innocent victims. He was the worlds most wanted man. However, when I woke up and looked on twitter, a friend of mine posted THIS VERSE: I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways & live. Ez 33:11

Why are we taking pleasure in his death? IF we look back at our own Jesus Christ, the man who we worship as Lord of ALL CREATION, we see that He was just as radical. Jesus taught against Jewish law. Jesus went against the grain of society and tradition to help get his point across. And with this logic, He was an extremist who recruited people for a cause that changed the world.

Now, Osama was a person who recruited people for a cause to help change the world through violence and killing. Jesus never even spoke of such. In John 13, we see that Christ tells us to love one another, just as He loves us.

Let me be clear, as soon as I found out 9/11 was a terrorist attack and we started pointing the finger at Bin Laden, I was the leader of the pack to blame him and curse him for his heinous actions. I said my share of cuss words, I prayed for his death, I was angry God would let something like this happen!

Through my years in ministry, and I am sure most youth minister can relate to this, I have struggled to bring students into the youth group. For one reason or another, we have to raise up more servant leaders each time and we have to keep the spiritual health of the group as a healthy and mature pace, but also try to help grow the group numerically. Jesus grew His group by 12 and now 2.3 billion people on earth are claiming to be Christ followers.

As much as I am happy with Osama Bin Laden's death, for those who needed some retribution for 9/11, I am also sad at the same time. I am sad that people are so desperate to believe in something greater than themselves that people will go to ANY lengths to reach them. You see, leadership wise, Osama Bin Laden was a great leader. He rallied his troops. He grew them numerically. He got them to believe in his cause.

Jesus is CRYING OUT for us to do the same, as ministers and followers of Him. I am sad because to my knowledge, Bin Laden was NOT a Christian. He may have eternal separation from Christ. On a world stage, it is harder to make believers of Christ, but the way I help grow my ministry is by loving those who need to be loved. I try to stray my judgement from them and pray to let me see what God sees in them. I see full potential in everyone to do GREAT things for Christ and this broken, hurting, and sin filled world.

I am never perfect. Jesus was and is the only perfect person to walk this earth. Osama Bin Laden was DEFINITELY NOT perfect. However, how are we going to look at this "victory" today? Are we going to sit and gloat at the Islamic world and just assume they are ALL going to hell? Or are we going to do as Christ commanded us to do. I choose to follow the great commission. I am called to make believers of Christ and Fishers of Men. As a youth minister, I can learn and grow from this experience.

**Again, this was a post to help find where God is in this whole situation. I do not have all the answers. However, this is not some Christian front I am putting on to get followers on twitter, people to read my blog, and a book deal down the road. I am looking to help equip ministers from all areas to look inside their heart and to find what Christ would want us to do. Now, more than ever, we can see that Christ is needing us to make Kingdom followers. Instead of bashing and hating the world, love the world for what Christ see's in it, not what we want to see and hear.

Put your comments below and let me know your thoughts...

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