On our Sunday June 28th Facebook Live I talked about supporting our law enforcement. In all our church safety training we recommend that you always invite local law enforcement and get them involved. There are several reasons for this. First you don’t want to get yourself into a bid if you do something that is against the law. Make sure everything in your policies and procedures of handling situations is legal. Get them to help you.
The second reason, local law enforcement needs to know that you have a safety team, especially if some of your team members are armed. In case of an active shooter at your church they know that there might be friendlies in the building and hopefully they don’t come in with guns blazing and kill some of your team members. Of course once the law enforcement arrives on the campus, the best thing for you to do is put your weapon away unless you are in the middle of a gun fight and then you need to listen to everything that law enforcement officer tells you to do.
The last reason, to me is really the most important. Are we as a church not supposed to be witnessing to everyone that comes on our property? We will let a complete stranger come through our doors and we will start with a list of questions; first time here, what church did you come from and are you a believer? So why wouldn’t we at least ask three questions to all law enforcement officers that come to our church; do you go to a church, are you a believer and can I pray for you?
So, if you haven’t noticed law enforcement agencies all over the country are under attack. The liberal media wants you to believe that all law enforcement officers just can’t wait to kill someone. They will tell you this is the reason why so many of them join the force, to be able to beat up people and if necessary, kill them. If you believe this in any way, we have another problem. You know what police officers want to do every day they go to work, make it back home safe. Don’t believe me, I will prove my point later.
Now here is the next thing if you have not noticed. In almost every webinar, training or Facebook Live we have done since the outbreak of this virus we have been pushing the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) April 8th letter on churches returning to their brick and mortar buildings. The Faith-Based Community of DHS sent out a letter stating, “When you begin efforts to reconstitute services and welcome congregants back into your houses of worship, please also review your security plans and ensure procedures are in place to protect your facilities and visitors. Although there are no imminent or credible threats at this time, there has been an increase in online hate speech intended to encourage violence or use the ongoing situation as an excuse to spread hatred.
Additionally, stressors caused by the pandemic may contribute to an individual’s decision to commit an attack or influence their target of choice. Again, we have no information to suggest such attacks are imminent or even likely, instead we are looking to provide you with useful information for planning for restoration of normal operations, whenever that may be.”
If the COVID-19 virus, stay at home, losing a job, suicide calls on the rise, drug overdoses increased, the George Floyd tragic death and riots across the nations wanting to tear down the government stressors weren’t enough we had someone issue a statement to destroy all images of a white Jesus. Black Life Matter’s activist Shaun King wrote in a Twitter post: “Yes, I think the statues of the white European they claim is Jesus should also come down. They are a form of white supremacy. Always have been.” He went on to say, “All murals and stained-glass windows of white Jesus, and his European mother, and their white friends should also come down.” I am sure the cross is next on their list of things to destroy.
So, it seems to me we have a common denominator here. Our law enforcement and our churches are under attack by the liberal left or another way of saying, “12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:12. My brothers and sisters if you don’t think Satan is a live and moving against our country please give me a call and let’s talk about this. We are at war “against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms”.
Those that protect us are under a viscous attack that unless we, the church, don’t stand up, show them our support and defend them we run the risk of losing them. Cities are already talking about defunding the police department or even tearing it down and starting over with social workers going on calls of domestic issues. A little bit of a side note here, when you send an unarmed social worker to a full-blown domestic fight, they return as another victim. I know I have been there.
Are there bad police officers? Yes, as humans we sin. Show me any profession where there aren’t any bad apples. Nobody is perfect and really until Christ comes back for us, we will never see perfect people. So, we must strive to be the example of what Christ would want us to do and believe it or not, He wants us to do good and respect those in authority. Paul writes it so eloquently in Romans 13:1-7.
“Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience. 6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.”
During my run the other morning I came upon a Pasco County Sergeant. I stopped to have a quick conversation with the Sergeant. Not even thinking about it I thanked him for what he does and right before I went back to running, I asked him if there was something I could pray for him. His response was just to go home safe after his shift.
I got home and realized that I didn’t get the Sergeant’s name, so I texted one of my friends who is a Pasco County Corporal and tell him of the incident. I didn’t tell him I had asked what could I pray for the Sergeant, just asked for his name. Before we finished texting, I asked my friend if there was something I could pray for him today, “Just to come home safe each day brother, it’s a crazy world”. Both deputies with the same thought “that I go home safe”. Do you pray that every day you go to work? Pray that you make it home that night to see your family or is it a given in your mind? It is not in theirs and we need to be there for them in this chaotic time. They are there for you, even if they have never met you before. You call; they come.
Brothers and Sister, we as the church must support our men and women in law enforcement. So here is my call to action. I want each church to contact their pastor and have a sit down with the leaders of your area law enforcement and pray for them. Now more than ever they need to know that we are supporting them. Wendy and I will be working on something in our area where we show our support. We must take a stand for those that stand between us and the chaos that is happening in this country right now. We cannot sit on the sidelines anymore. We must take a stance. Support the Badge!
Jim has many years of law enforcement experience and has run the safety team at his church for several years. TSA was formed after he realized God's calling when multiple churches reached out and asked him to present at their church.