Kim - Reading about your family and the generations of persecution they suffered and learning about your early life really made me stop and think how ridiculous "keeping up with the Joneses" really is. True hardship is not when you can't drive the same model car as your boss. Real suffering is so much more than just not having Gates as a last name. Despite everything you went through, you overcame it all to become the great man of God that you are now. Based on your own personal history, what do you say to people today who are facing their own "my life is over" moments?
Adrian - I would first of all begin by sharing the whole premise of the book - to let people know that there is a life behind the pain and that they can overcome any obstacle that the enemy might try to send their way through the power of the spoken word. The Book of Proverbs says that the power of life and death is in our tongues. It doesn't say that it's in our wallets or in our relationships or in our governments. It says it's in the tongue. The reason I wrote the book is because I see so much hopelessness in America. That hopelessness seems to cross the sacred realm and the secular realm. I see it everywhere. It's a spirit that says, "Things are not going to get any better. Things are not changing." Here we find ourselves in the midst of the seasonal holidays. We have Thanksgiving and Christmas to celebrate. Statistics have proven that the suicide rate goes up 30 to 35 percent during the holidays. So what I wanted to do through this book is to first of all, let people know that we were created in the image of God. The God that we serve is a creative God. When He got ready to start creating the Heavens and the earth, he didn't go to Home Depot or Lowes to pick up a hammer and nails to fix this place up. Everything was created through the spoken word. God said, "Let there be light" and there was light. I want to remind people that not only did God create us in His own image, we share that characteristic of being creative beings. It's in our DNA. So if we keep talking negative, saying things like, "It's never going to get better, I can't _____ (stay in this relationship, see myself graduating college, make it through tomorrow," I believe you are pretty much sealing yourself for doom by your own words, not by someone else. The Bible says that by our own words, we are ensnared. Words can either ensnare or enslave us or they can release us to fulfill our God-given purpose and destiny. I want people to understand that we don't have to wait on the government, our parents, our partners, our boss or our teachers to fulfill our destinies. We have the power. We need to tell Hell "NO!" - literally - and say, "You know what? I can have what God says I can have. I can do what God says I can do. I can go where God says I can go," because He has given us the power to overcome any challenge whether it's sickness, disease, finances or relationships ... through the power of the spoken word. We just have to realize the importance of telling hell "No!"
Kim - Amen to that! Preach it brother! It seems to me that a lot of people don't understand that telling Hell "no" is not the same thing as telling Heaven "Yes." It's a two-step process. A personal relationship with Jesus is more than just showing up on Sunday.
Adrian - The thing that is so tragic with the church today is that we have raised up a generation of individuals that are so narcissistic. It seems that when we go to church, we're looking to get our blessing, our deliverance, our restoration, our breakthrough. That's tied in to our immediate family. We will do what we need to do for our children but we have raised a society that has a me mentality rather than a we mentality. Because of that, we have literally turned God into some form of entertainment where we sit back as spectators, expecting God to be the entertainer. That is totally opposite to what Scripture says. In the book of Hebrews, it says we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses and when one person, one individual comes to know Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior, all of Heaven gives a standing ovation! They throw a huge party! We have got it twisted. Heaven is what we are supposed to be entertaining. Heaven is the spectator, we are the ones who are supposed to be entertainers. Through our works, we glorify God. The problem in the world we are living in is that people are looking inside of the church and the body of Christ has lost its edge. It used to be that the church would present the message of Jesus Christ and we would either be accepted or rejected ... Now we're just straight-up being ignored! That's because we preach the sermon but nobody is listening because we want to see the sermon first, before we one. The book was written for two reasons: number one, to be able to say, "The first step to telling Hell no is to accept Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior," and number two to encourage and empower the body of Christ to say, " Hey, we're not going to just sit down and wait for the bus. We're going to actively get back in and engage in warfare like David." David fought Goliath, but he still had to pick up his slingshot and five smooth stones. God wants to fight the battle through us not for us!
Kim - Amen!
Adrian - In the world today, we're so focused on what is happening in the White House that the devil is killing what is happening in our house. We focus so much on the donkey and the elephant that we forget about the Lion and the Lamb.
Kim - Exactly! It is like our faith has gotten weak. It breaks my heart to see the body back down at the first sign of a possible battle. I wrote a story last week about a humanist group threatening to sue two public schools for letting their students participate in Operation Christmas Child. They weren't actually doing it at the school. The kids were packing boxes at home and then taking them to school as a drop-off point. The group said it was a violation of the Constitution to allow the school to participate in a religious event at all and it was nothing more than bribing poor kids to accept Christ with toys. Both schools met with their legal departments and caved to the demands rather than possibly have to fight it out.
Adrian - We, as Christians, are supposed to be totally counter-culture. I'm interested in being Biblically correct, not politically correct! Politics are to never usurp Biblical truth. We, as a body of Christ, have to make a choice. We're either going to pursue being important or we're going to pursue being empowered. We've got to figure out whether we want to be popular or in power! We can't win a popularity contest. Jesus said that we're not going to be able to popular and His disciples. He said, "If they spit on me, they're going to spit on you. If they crucify me, they're going to crucify you." So it's time for the body of Christ to quit crying, quit whimpering. Here in America, we don't really know anything about persecution. We think that if somebody talks about us behind our back, we're getting persecuted for Christ's sake. Or if the Pastor didn't shake our hand after church, or we didn't get to sing the lead anthem in the choir, we're getting persecuted. But Christians around the world are getting slaughtered today, more than ever in the history of Christiandom. Children are being burned alive. Daughters are being raped and shot. It is crazy what is happening in the world and we sit over here and cry because somebody talked about us!
Kim - You see adults acting like that and you want to say, "What are you? Twelve?"
Adrian - Paul wrote to the church in Corinthians and he said, "Listen! Ya'll haven't suffered unto death!" I'm praying that this book will act as an awakening tool in the body of Christ.
Kim - We do need to wake up and act because if we let the world run over us too much longer, we won't be able to stand up anymore.
Adrian - I've always been concerned about them taking prayer out of the schoolhouse, but I'm even more concerned about who is taking prayer out of our house. I understand what the schools are doing concerning not allowing children to pray and being hostile to anything that could even be a conduit to present the gospel of Jesus Christ to another human being, but the question is how many people in my family brought to the Lord in the last year? How many prayers have we uttered in our house in the last year? Corrie ten Boom has a wonderful quote that she stated; she said," You will never know that Jesus is all you need until Jesus is all you have." I pray that America doesn't have to get to that point before we realize we have to do something. Like you said about the children getting introduced to Jesus through a Christmas gift. Let me tell you something: one day, when we stand before God, those children and every adult who was "coerced" will thank the Lord for that gift! You can call if bribed or coerced, but I would rather spend the rest of my eternity in Heaven than live in Hell and then die and go to Hell!
Kim - So true! Jesus gave the greatest gift of all. He gave his life for us. I don't see that as a bribe. Sharing that gift with others isn't coercion. God gives us all choice - we can be introduced to Jesus and accept His gift or reject it. That choice trumps any charges of bribery!
Adrian - That is exactly right! You know, a lot of Christians come to me and they say, "Adrian, you come from a persecuted country but I wasn't born in Romania. I don't have a history of persecution and martyrdom in my family like you do so don't expect me to be as passionate as you are about sharing my faith in Jesus publicly." I conclude my book by stating this: If we, who have received Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior, we have martyred blood running through our veins as well. Then I quote from the hymn, "The Old Rugged Cross." It was the blood of Jesus that was shed on that cross that wipes away our sins. Every human being that is a child of God has that blood so stand up and speak up and tell Hell no!
Kim - Amen to that!