News commentary: The pope’s trip to the United States is a “reassurance marker” that we are almost home

A view of Interstate 40 in eastern New Mexico. Image by John Phelan/Wikicommons

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A view of Interstate 40 in eastern New Mexico. Image by John Phelan/Wikicommons

September 29, 2015 | By John Bradshaw, speaker and director, It Is Written

Drive from North Carolina to California and you’ll most likely travel on Interstate 40.

As helpful as the mile markers are that you pass along the way, the most important signs are the “reassurance markers”: blue shields that ever so often tell you that you are heading in the right direction on the right road.

God frequently allows us to see prophetic “reassurance markers” that help His people to see that they are on the right prophetic road, heading steadily toward the Second Coming of Jesus.

Pope Francis’ six-day “Apostolic Journey” to the United States is one such “reassurance marker.”

The pope’s already stratospheric popularity has surged on the back of the constant news coverage afforded him by a breathless media. In-depth, long-form profiles of Pope Francis have been published by virtually every significant news outlet, and one cable company established an entire channel dedicated solely to coverage of the papal visit.

Before he had completed his first year as pope, Time Magazine christened him “The People’s Pope.” A journalist in secular Britain opined that “even atheists should pray for this pope,”and a prominent U.S. sportswriter stated that “this pope might even convince me to go back to church.” The New York Times reported that Francis has “achieved a unique global stature in a short time.”

While the number of professed Christians in the United States is declining rapidly, according to the respected Pew Research Center, the country has embraced this conservative religious leader. One broadcaster declared, “Everyone here in New York City is excited” about the pope’s visit. A cable news anchor congratulated a female colleague on air for the “amazing experience” she was having in her “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” of traveling with the pope. While Christianity is commonly disparaged in the media, this pope has been feted like a rock star. Francis is huge.

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