Over the years, various people have described me as opinionated. Yes. I certainly am. And sometimes, my opinions are actually grounded in Scripture, making them right. Being opinionated, though often considered as a negative personality trait, can show that a person knows what he or she believes and why he or she believes it. Such certainty may be arrogant, or (depending on the context) it may reveal confident wisdom.
Hopefully my opinions reveal confident wisdom.
If you subscribe to The Outspoken TULIP, you may wonder why I haven’t written a word about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Surely someone as opinionated as I would have plenty to say about this situation, and would come out swinging! I usually do things like that.
The invasion does trouble me. John and I have acquaintances from Ukraine who left their parents and siblings to build a life for their children here in Massachusetts. We attended church with them, often entertained by their little boy’s absolute fascination with John. Just a year ago, the mother spent considerable time in Ukraine visiting a sick family member. So when I heard the initial rumblings about the invasion, I began praying for her family and her husband’s family.
Hence my silence on Russia’s invasion does not mean that I’m indifferent to the situation. I do understand the seriousness of Putin’s actions, and I pray a lot for the suffering civilians who sleep (well, attempt to sleep) in basements and subway stations to stay sheltered from bombs and missiles. You can bet that I have opinions, and that those opinions don’t align with the views of Tucker Carlson (which is rare).
Yet I haven’t completely rejected Carlson’s point of view. In time, I probably will reject it, but at the moment I don’t understand it well enough to either reject or embrace it. When I listened to his monologue Monday night, I began thinking that perhaps I really don’t know enough about the political intricacies of the situation to formulate an opinion.
Similarly, I’m woefully uneducated regarding eschatology, which disqualifies me from speculating on whether or not this war might usher in the Rapture. I have my suspicions. Suspicions however, aren’t solid enough to sustain dogmatic assertions. Do I see potential for a Third World War? Possibly. But even if that happened (let’s pray it doesn’t), would that necessarily mean that the Second Coming is imminent? Sadly, I’m the wrong person to ask.
Putin’s invasion of Ukraine disturbs and grieves me, and I by no means want to ignore or minimize its impact. My heart breaks for the family we knew at church, a well as for the Christians over there hunkering down in basements and subway stations while Russian bombs fly across their land. I can’t fully imagine their terror. I also shudder at the impact on America because of our dependence on Russian oil. Although I don’t understand the complexities that will result from this war, I know that it’s cause for mourning and prayer.
Perhaps I’d do best to simply encourage you toward prayer, whether you have opinions or not. We can all rest in the truth that God is in control of all history, and not even Vladimir Putin can disrupt His plans. Rather than try to formulate opinions, maybe I’d do best to just pray for the people in Ukraine and rejoice that God is doing what will ultimately glorify Him.