Double Bubble

As Seventh-day Adventists we live in a double bubble; things have been changing around us enough to be noticed, but not quickly enough for us to make any life-changing decisions. It’s like the frog test, where a frog was put in cool water, but then the temperature was raised slowly enough that the frog didn’t notice the change, and he cooked to death without ever jumping out. That’s us today. Chicken Little has been yelling from our pulpits for many years now that the sky is falling, but we’re too distracted now by everything else to notice it that much.

We see our country being dismantled at an increasingly faster pace, our freedoms disappearing right before our eyes, but not too much we can do about that without making ourselves a target or causing a scene.

The first big bubble is our active-duty military. The National Guard and Public Safety are our state and local protectors. The military includes just over two million personnel and nearly 750 thousand civilians. Without them we would be speaking Mandarin, Russian, Farsi, or we would likely be dead. When I was 18 years old, we had the “military draft.” I had to either register for the draft and take my chances, or purposely join one of the armed services. I chose the Navy and then nuclear submarines as a sonar technician. Today there is no draft, which means that everyone in the military is there because they want to be there, and to help defend our country.

The second big bubble is our SDA church. Many are here because of family, relatives, or friends. Some are here because God lead them here. My first exposure to the SDA church was when I met my wife Cheryl; she was raised Adventist, but not Christian… there’s a night and day difference. Because of that, I wanted to have nothing to do with this church. Years later, I finally asked God to show me where He wanted me; that’s when I entered the SDA bubble.

Living inside our double bubble has been an incredible blessing in a political world that is bent on destroying us and a religious world that is bent on leading us astray. However, like that frog in increasingly hot water, we are now in hot water too. Satan, the devil and leader of his demonic angels, is turning up the heat as he knows his time is short. Lies, deception, and coercion are his primary tools to “cook” us. Satan is turning up the heat as quickly as he can, but it’s a balancing act to not turn up the heat too fast, or else we will jump out of the hot water.

If you are paying attention to the world news, our military is primarily being challenged with too many wars in too many places simultaneously, spreading our military too thin to keep our international bubble safe. For the last 50 years that I’ve been in the SDA church, our leaders have been on task, warning us relentlessly about the Time of Trouble and the End of the World.
However, like Chicken Little, he was warning everyone about the sky falling for so long that almost nobody paid much attention to it anymore.

Both big bubbles are being threatened in a way that I never could have imagined even 20 years ago. I see the freedoms that we inherited from the sacrifices of the WWII generation being squandered, abused, and sidelined as never before. I see a church that is still in the Laodicean lukewarm condition. There’s an old saying: “there are 3 types of people in the world; those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who wonder what happened.” Anecdotally, Pastor Diego added a 4th type of person: “those who work to hinder those who make things happen.” We need to be among those who minimally watch, but are vigilant, and work to sound the alarm: “Blow the trumpet in Zion; sound an alarm on my holy mountain! Let all of the inhabitants of the land tremble, for the day of the Lord is coming; it is near" (Joel 2:1).

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