Wednesday, September 02, 2009

R-71: Everything Has Its Season

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R-71 UPDATE: R-71 has exceeded the 120,577 valid signatures to be placed on the November ballot. Representative Matt Shea told me last night that we have 122,011.

Judge Julie Spector has said she will rule today on the lawsuit filed, asking for a restraining order against Secretary of State Sam Reed, preventing him from certifying R-71 to the ballot. The Secretary's office has said he intends to certify the Referendum today.

The Temporary Restraining Order we were given, which temporarily sealed the names of all who signed the R-71 petitions, will be considered tomorrow in a different court with a ruling to follow.

We will keep you updated.

On a personal word, thank you to all who sent me emails yesterday. There were so many that I am unable to answer or respond by email. Your encouraging words mean more than I could say. Thanks and God bless you.

Everything Has Its Season

Ancient Scripture says, "To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven."

The narrative continues, identifying 14 such seasons, one of which is, "A time to keep silence, and a time to speak." Ecc. 7:3

Referendum 71 has become a defining issue in both the church and the culture.

And everything has its time. Is this the time to be silent, take the path of least resistance and let the culture devolve and ultimately implode morally? Or is it a time to speak? You will decide. Washington State cannot now avoid addressing the issue of same-sex marriage. It will be before every Washington voter.

I am certain very few will be silent.

Yesterday, Senator Ed Murray announced that he will not run for mayor of Seattle. He acknowledged that a write-in candidacy is very difficult but said, "The recognition that Referendum 71 will appear on the fall ballot galvanized my decision." He also called R-71 making the ballot, "A dark day."

Seattle mayoral candidate Joe Mallahan called it a sad day. He said, "It is preposterous to me that a small group of people can push a referendum to strip away rights from any group of people." He said of the coming campaign that it, "will show those who organized this hateful campaign that they do not represent Washington State's values."

It is apparent that those of us who are not silent, will be accused of hate, bigotry and extremism. I spent some time on Dori Monson's talk show yesterday on KIRO 97.3. As our interview was concluding he said, on air, "Gary, you know the other side will unleash every imaginable attack on you as this moves forward, don't you? Are you prepared for that?" My response was, "No, I'm not prepared for that, but am willing to walk through it."

And there is a time to speak.

There are also voices within the church who are calling for silence. We have seen and heard that call from the day Referendum 71 was launched. I would suppose that voice, in various forms, will continue---even intensify.

Those of us who have formed this coalition are asking you to hear a call to action. This voice is asking you to defend marriage, protect the family and preserve those values upon which the greatest culture in history was built.

Pastor Jan Hettinga from Northshore Baptist told the Seattle Times several months ago in response to the, "leaderless army milling about in the field" conversation that, "I think there is a very intelligent, moral, conservative population in this city and in this state, but they just haven't figured out yet how to let their voices be heard without being labeled."

I agree with Pastor Jan. There is indeed such a population, but perhaps we will not fully escape being labeled "haters" when we do not hate; bigots, when we are not bigoted; and attempting to strip rights from people, when we are trying to defend marriage.

There is a time to speak.

Being labeled is not inconsistent with Christianity. The word "Christian" was not initially intended to be complimentary.

R-71 has been called "historic" by the press. It is. Yet the most historic aspect of what you have done by putting R-71 on the ballot may yet lie ahead.

It is possible that this may become a defining time for both the culture and the church, particularly Christians and people of faith.

As we have secularized our culture, we have drifted far from our founding principles and lost our moral compass.

The fact that you put R-71 on the ballot has already been a wake-up call to many---on both sides.

This is not a time for Christians and people of faith to be silent. It is a time to speak. We must not at this important time, misunderstand our responsibility to the culture and to God's kingdom on this earth and remain silent.

This is a time to speak.

We need money. On a few dollars we have been able to progress to this point. We must have more funding in the days just ahead. I know you understand that and will do what you can.

Your donation to the Faith and Freedom PAC is spent entirely and exclusively on direct expenses related to promoting R-71 through the Internet, printing, mailing and now media advertising.

Thank you for donating now.

This is a time to speak.

In a few days we will be giving you specific direction as to how we plan to proceed. Thank you and God bless you.

Gary Randall
Faith & Freedom

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