HONOLULU, January 21, 2014 – With a bad economy, persistent unemployment and so many confusing signals from policymakers, many people are worried about what the new year may hold for them. In an exclusive interview with CDN, Dr. Stephen Swisher, an internationally recognized Christian pastor shared his tips for navigating through the stormy seas of life and “making the impossible … possible” in 2014.
Dr. Danny de Gracia: Steve, a lot of people in America right now feel like they’re “stuck” in either financial problems or that they’re going around in circles in relationships and life issues and just can’t break out. You recently did a sermon on overcoming impossible situations, what’s your advice as a pastor for people who have been burdened with problems they can’t seem to shake off?
Dr. Stephen Swisher: A lot of people do feel as though problems are weighing them down and they can’t see their way out. In my message from this past Sunday, I gave a four point plan to make the impossible “possible” based on Matthew 17:20. In a nutshell: don’t underestimate the problem, be real about what you are facing; don’t overestimate the problem [either] or your ability to deal with it creatively; don’t wait, time is not your friend and patience is not a virtue when it comes to a problem or impossibility, act now; [and] insulate, don’t isolate yourself from those who can help, but do insulate yourself from negative people.
DDG: What’s your thoughts about the direction that the U.S. is going in 2014? The House passed a $1.1 trillion appropriations measure. Taxpayers are spending huge amounts of money but they’re seeing government services cut, the military is in decline, China is on the rise … in many ways America seems to be in a crisis of existence.
Dr. Swisher: I have always been of the opinion that today is always the best time to do the right thing. In 2014, the President, the Congress, the justices of the Supreme Court and each of us in the electorate all have the opportunity to do the right thing. It is harder to do it today than it would have been yesterday, but much easier to do it today than it will be tomorrow as each day problems compound and get worse. I believe that President Clinton’s statement over twenty years ago is as true today as it was then: “There is nothing wrong with America that can’t be fixed by what’s right with America.” We all must take a hard look at our nation and make the correct choices to keep her strong, prosperous and vital for generations to come.
DDG: Do you think that government is starting to encroach on religious freedoms in America?
Dr. Swisher: The U.S. government only has as much power as citizens give it. This is not some group of people in an ivory tower making decisions. The people in the White House and in Congress are there because voters put them there. So voters must bear some of the responsibility for the direction of our nation. And to answer you specifically, there are several examples of government encroaching upon religious freedom and personal liberty. This should not be allowed in 21st century America. That is why it is important that we are informed about candidates and vote our consciences when we go to the polls.
We greatly appreciate the opportunity to interview Dr. Swisher. Find out more about him and his wife Kellie by visiting steveandkellie.kcm.org and watch his sermons online at 4cumc.org.