Author archives: James Selvey

John James’ Faith-Driven Message After U.S. Senate Loss

by James Selvey

November 29, 2018

When John James took the stage following his U.S. Senate loss in Michigan, he presented it as not as a sign of complete disappointment, but as a new chapter in his life. James is not looking for someone or something to blame for losing the election. Instead, he spoke to his supporters about what they already have achieved and what building blocks they have constructed for the future of Michigan and the U.S. Here are several key takeaways that he laid out in his concession speech on election night.

First, John saw his campaign not as a guaranteed path to victory, but as a challenge from God to step out in faith and obedience and take a stand for others. As the results were turning in favor of his opponent Debbie Stabenow, John was already looking at the accomplishments made throughout his run. “We won tonight…because we were tested. We were tested and rose to the occasion and the Lord asked us to step out of the boat. And we stepped out of the boat. And we said, Lord if you call me, I will come. And that’s what we did.”  

Second, John talked about the importance of keeping loved ones close and encouraging his supporters to keep fighting for the institution of the family. His wife Elizabeth and his two sons joined him on stage to promote the welfare and institution of families across Michigan. “This is what sustains me and kept me going. This is why we’re not done. Because too many families out there don’t have the ability to live the lives we do…We still need to look out for our families. We still need to break the shackles of dependency that keep so many bolted to their situations right now. We still need to make sure we’re doing things the right way.”

With a spirit of humility and joy, John spoke of serving God through taking action not centered on temporary benefits, but for the eternal rewards in God’s kingdom. “A passion for service doesn’t end with a poll, it doesn’t end with a vote, it ends in the grave… My priority is making investments in things that no one can take away from you. Because our reward is in heaven. And we recognize that we have to love everyone, and work with anyone to serve everyone.” He further stated that “anybody can give glory to God when the times are good, but you know we’re still supposed to glorify Him in defeat.”

No matter what the outcome, John understood that God’s plans reach beyond the current moment: “He has a bigger plan than what we can understand. And I’ll tell you what, His plan is perfect. And we’re not done. And He’s not done. And you shouldn’t be done.” After thanking his supporters, John promised that “I’m not going anywhere. This is just the beginning … we have the ability to not just elect our leaders but to be our leaders.”

As John’s speech suggests, Christians should not only worship God in victory, but also worship Him in times of defeat. John understands that he has the ability to help serve and raise up those who have little. He knows that his political career is not defined by just one election. He’s using what he has learned and accomplished during his Senate run to prepare for bigger plans that God may have in store.

Watch John James’ full concession speech.

The Power of Prayer and What It Should Mean for Christians in America

by James Selvey

October 16, 2018

Andrew Brunson is not hesitating to fulfill his pastoral duties, even after just returning home from Turkey after two years of imprisonment. The pastor visited the Oval Office on October 13, asking the President if he could pray for him. “I need it probably more than anyone else in this room, so that would be very nice, thank you,” the President replied.

Brunson’s prayer follows: “Lord God, I ask that you pour out your Holy Spirit on President Trump. That you give him supernatural wisdom to accomplish all the plans you have for this country and for him. I ask that you give him wisdom on how to lead this country into righteousness. I ask that you give him perseverance and endurance and courage to stand for truth. I ask that you protect him from slander from enemies, from those who would undermine. I ask that you make him a great leader for this country. Fill him with your wisdom and strength and perseverance, and we bless him. May he be a great blessing to our country. In Jesus’ name, we bless you. Amen.”

Brunson’s wife Norine, also offered condolence in prayer, “I pray that the spirit of the Lord rest on the president. The spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, spirit of knowledge and fear of the Lord. Amen.”

The emphasis of Pastor Brunson and his wife’s prayers lays a heart-warming and encouraging message for the Christian community. No matter what trial we may be experiencing, Christians are called to be God-conscious in their lives to allow God to work through the people who are representing us as a nation. George Washington once said, “It is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor.” Prayer is an action we take of opening a door to allow God to answer the needs we place before Him. In addition, prayer isn’t solely the act of supporting one another, but also the allowance of God to work in our hearts and be changed more to reflect His image instead of of our own. Our President, Congressmen, Supreme Court justices, and those even at the state and local levels, need our prayers of support for decisions to be made with prudence, since what they do will effectively either prosper or harm us. Romans 1:28 forewarns us of those who don’t acknowledge God. Those who don’t are declared by God to be given “up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.” Without the action of prayer, God cannot lead us in unity or humble us to live in His fruit of humility, kindness, patience, and joy. We will be more susceptible to giving in to our own ambitions.

American Founders such as Samuel Adams heeded prayer as a necessity to keep the blessings of God abounding throughout our nation. “May every citizen in the army and in the country have a proper sense of the Deity upon his mind and an impression of that declaration recorded in the Bible: ‘Him that honoreth Me I will honor, but he that despiseth Me shall be lightly esteemed’” [1 Samuel 2:30]. Mankind alone cannot hope to obtain the right to true wisdom and understanding if they do not understand the precedent of acknowledging the Creator. The Creator who crafted us in principle and love to serve each other under the guidelines of the teachings of Jesus Christ, who He himself arose “early in the morning, while it was still dark,” (Mark 1:35) to pray to the Father. Jesus came to earth as a servant, to be obedient to the Father and submit Himself to His will. If we truly desire an eternal relationship with the Father, then we must abide by the Son’s example. 

Let us remember what Abraham Lincoln once said: “[I]t is the duty of nations as well … and to recognize the sublime truth announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord [Psalm 33:12]… . But we have forgotten God. We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us, and we have vainly imagined in the deceitfulness of our hearts that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own. Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace — too proud to pray to the God that made us.”

In our time, let us never allow ourselves to be too proud or distracted by what happens on this earth to drive us astray from praying to our Father in heaven for each other and our leaders. Take some time in a quiet place. He’s always willing to listen.

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John James' Faith-Driven Message After U.S. Senate Loss
by James Selvey (Nov. 29, 2018)

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