The theme for Illinois Family Institute’s recent fall banquet was boldness, and our theme verse highlights that quality: “The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion” (Proverbs 28:1).
Boldness is exemplified by courage, confident strength, resolute purpose, and wisdom that expresses itself with measured words and actions.
For decades, Christian conservatives have tried the kinder, gentler approach with our adversaries. We’ve desperately tried to find common ground wherever and whenever we could. Yet time after time, especially in Springfield, that approach has failed.
Regressive politicians, activists, and many in the media don’t respect us, and they certainly don’t fear us. In fact, they often exploit our most cherished values, pervert them, and then throw them back in our face. And why are they able to do this? Because we have replaced boldness with cowardice and, as a result, they are emboldened to bully us, taking advantage of our good will.
We must understand that politics has become weaponized against us. The apostles of the world are relentless in the pursuit of their wicked goals. They are not above lying, cheating, defaming, and resorting to payoffs. Rhetorical, social, and political malfeasance is, in their view, a justifiable means to their destructive ends—especially when they know full well we will not reciprocate in kind.
Assuredly we will not sink to their level. We will not lie, cheat, or slander in our pursuit of good. But, we can and should abandon our posture of timidity and become more assertive—bolder—in exposing the disastrous consequences of their perverted policy proposals.
We must understand this is not merely an ideological fight between the right and the left or between conservatives and Leftists. This is a war between good and evil that has existed since the beginning of time. As Christians, we must gird ourselves as for battle. We must be prepared and willing to boldly engage in the public square.
Our opponents have three powerful allies on their side: academia, media, and the entertainment industry. They control the culture-shaping megaphones that relentlessly blare their body and soul-destroying messages into the hearts and minds of Americans, specifically targeting our impressionable children.
We cannot compete against this evil with fearful, self-serving silence. In his letter to the Ephesians, Paul exhorts the recipients, and us, “be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.” Similarly, the Psalmist reminds us, “be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.” Now is the time to toughen up and stop playing it safe; we must speak and act boldly, knowing that our mighty God stands with us!
Earlier this year we told you how regressive legislators and anti-life groups in Springfield have tried to intimidate IFI into silence regarding Illinois’ radical abortion expansion bill—legislation that we likened to the Jewish Holocaust. Their official joint resolution (HJR 55) is still pending a vote. It calls for our right to lobby at the Capitol to be revoked and for the Illinois State Police to investigate us for “hate speech.”
We will not be intimidated by these oppressive schemes.
Christians cannot surrender the public square to those who celebrate the extermination of more than 60+ million pre-born babies—human beings—whom liberals have deemed “unworthy of life.” Rather, we must boldly fight for what we believe, refusing to cower in fear or abandon the truth.
Another example came a couple of weeks after our annual banquet, when the left-wing Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) attacked Rev. Franklin Graham for keynoting our event, claiming that we have a “history of anti-LGBTQ stances” that are “perhaps even more extreme than” Rev. Graham’s stance.
What the anti-Christian SPLC fails to understand is that our stance on sexual morality is the historical stance that has been held by orthodox Christians for more than two thousand years.
In an article posted on the IFI website, Laurie Higgins rightly points out:
“The Illinois Family Institute does not hate people. … We believe genuine love—as opposed to what passes for love today—entails seeking for others that which is true and good. Genuine love as demonstrated by Christ does not entail affirming all the feelings, beliefs, and volitional acts of others. Genuine love entails concern for both temporal and eternal lives.”
We believe the assumptions espoused by both the homosexual and “trans” communities are harming individuals—especially children—and society. Schools are inculcating children with arguable assumptions that are presented as objective facts. The medical community is chemically sterilizing and surgically mutilating children. If these ideologies are false, then opposing them is the antithesis of hatred.
Believing an assumption is wrong, or believing a volitional sexual act is … immoral does not constitute hatred of persons who believe differently and act in accordance with their beliefs. Perhaps SPLC hatewatchers hate everyone who holds different beliefs and moral precepts than they do, but they ought not impute their habits of mind to others.
We at IFI, like many other people, are fully capable of loving those who believe differently and act in accordance with their beliefs—even false and destructive beliefs. And we will express our beliefs with the boldness and clarity that the sanctimonious deceivers at the SPLC express theirs.
In our effort to more effectively pursue good legislation and derail bad proposals, IFI would like to move from utilizing a part-time contract lobbyist to employing a full-time legislative director who will boldly stand as our ambassador for Christ and His Kingdom. But we need your prayers and financial support to make this goal a reality.
Love for our family and our neighbor motivates us. This is why IFI Team members work so hard to counter the lies of the secular culture. The lies of the left must be unmasked, and Christians in Illinois must be equipped to defend pro-life, pro-family truth in the public square. Together we can expose the deception of the sexual revolution, embolden pro-life advocacy, uphold parental rights (including school choice), and respect the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution.
It is vital that we expand our efforts to inform and equip the Christian community in Illinois with email alerts, video reports, podcasts, pastors’ breakfasts, special forums, worldview conferences, and cultural commentaries.
To realize this goal, we will need to significantly increase our marketing budget in order to maximize our presence on social media platforms and conservative and Christian radio stations.
This is where you can help us. We need these financial resources more now than ever to help us accomplish our mission to “boldly bring a biblical perspective to the public square” in Illinois. It is vital that we expand our pro-family efforts and push back against the destructive plans of the SPLC, the ACLU, Planned Parenthood and all their regressive allies.
Please, help us reach our matching challenge goal of $70,000 by midnight tonight. We are just about $5,000 short of this goal, and we believe that we can reach or even surpass that goal in the remaining hours we have today. You are vital to making this mission – and cultural impact – possible.
If we truly believe God’s gifts to mankind of self-government, religious liberty, freedom of conscience, and the right to freely advocate for morality are worth fighting for, then we must act boldly to preserve these gifts!
I hope you will answer the call to faithfully proclaim truth and refute the distorted and destructive messages of our opponents and their sycophant mouthpieces. There’s no time to wait – the deadline is midnight TONIGHT.
Your donation to IFI will enable us to implement our ministry goals and reach out to every county and legislative district in Illinois. We must further fortify those areas that support pro-life and pro-family legislation, as well as fight to breach the strongholds that threaten to annihilate any trace of morals, decency, and common sense in our state.
We are grateful for your generous support throughout 2019 and are excited to see what God will do through our partnership with you, for the benefit of all the citizens of Illinois and the Glory of His Name!
P.S. Please help us uphold, preserve and promote God’s plan for natural marriage and family, the sanctity of human life and religious freedom by investing in the work of Illinois Family Institute by helping us reach our matching challenge goal.