CMDA's The Point

Are You Visiting People in Their Quicksand?

June 29, 2023

by Nicole D. Hayes

“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows” (Psalm 23:5, ESV).


“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal” (1 Corinthians 13:1, ESV).


Today’s times seem unprecedented. A good portion of society is operating in and suspended in deception—at which they have become both captives and perpetrators of the delusions. They are not entirely at fault, for Satan is rampantly advancing lies and inviting anyone and everyone to join his campaign of evil ideologies often disguised as “autonomy” and “compassion.” As people become anchored in the deceptions trusting in their faulty thinking, as my dear brother in Christ and founder of Relevant Now, Hakim Hazim, said, God calls the believer to “visit the quicksand that others are stuck in, to help pull them out. We visit their quicksand, but we are not anchored or stuck in the quicksand, for we are anchored in a sure foundation (the truth, the solid rock that is Jesus Christ). It is uncomfortable but it is what we are called to do.”


Quicksand is a substance that, when you stand on it, you begin to sink. You are not standing on a sure foundation. For that reason, it can take a while to get out of quicksand. Per this video, you can survive quicksand, but you will need help getting free.


The further decaying of societal norms and morals is a type of “quicksand” for those who are not standing on the sure foundation of truth, the sure foundation of Jesus Christ. As Jesus said in Matthew 7:24-26, “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand” (NIV).


We are grieved and sobered by the decay. When we are not in alignment with God, it creates chaos and disorder. For example, some think protecting and preserving human life is objectionable. The manmade and fluid social construct of “gender” is challenging DNA-biological sex assigned at conception, muddying ethical and scientifically evidenced healthcare delivery and norms. Speaking truth in the face of deception is considered hostile. For those of us who claim to follow Christ, if we are not intentional in praying and seeking to truly mirror Christ in our words, disposition and actions, we can easily lose our reason for being a love letter to the world. We should have a righteous anger in seeing the enemy’s assault on God’s image bearers. We are called to “…demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5, NIV). In doing so, Lord, keep us recognizable to you—and not reduced to worldly tactics.




A Lesson in Loving Your Enemies

In Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s sermon “Loving Your Enemies,” delivered on November 17, 1957 at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama, the message is basic and serious as Dr. King references Jesus’ words and command to us in Matthew 5:43-45 to love and pray for our enemies. Dr. King notes that, although it is basic, it is difficult given the numerous reasons we may disagree or dislike someone. And yet, Jesus gives us this command. Dr. King continued, “We have the Christian and moral responsibility to seek to discover the meaning of these words, and to discover how we can live out this command, and why we should live by this command.” I invite you to read Dr. King’s sermon.


In the imperfect work of advocacy and public policy that I, along with my colleagues, engage in within the states and the federal government, most of us do so in the hopes of helping people out of their quicksand—so they and others may experience true freedom and human flourishing. It is an arduous and persistent work with a variety of partners hopefully undergirded in and led with prayer and guidance of the Holy Spirit.


However, it is not only the unbeliever who is anchored in quicksand. Feeling somewhat powerless (and fearful) in seeing society’s quickening moral decay, there are believers who have trusted in the idols of institutions, partisan politics and politicians, or other vehicles to swing a sledgehammer upon our amoral culture. Seeking relationship with the idols to bring about our agenda seems the order of the day, rather than seeking relationship to help extract those who remain stuck in their quicksand. The non-believer is succumbing in their quicksand, while some believers are succumbing to a “power-drunk” societal quicksand that has forgotten the cross when they deal with other individuals. In the pursuit of power, Dr. King in his sermon says that love “is the only creative, redemptive, transforming power in the universe.”


The quicksand is real, and people are succumbing. Visit people in their quicksand. Consider if your words, disposition and actions are undergirded in love with a focus on relationship instead of power. In referencing Psalm 23:5, I love the vision it creates in my mind. While we may have enemies, by placing a table before our enemies, we are hoping they may join us. We hope to put a leaf in the table so more may join us at the table. As we’re educating and extracting folks out of their quicksand, as we’re pursuing relationship instead of power, faulty mindsets may get set free. If we’re behaving with a mind as liberators (Isaiah 61) rather than our political party affiliation, folks might get set free. There is no benefit in demonizing or vilifying those who are stuck in quicksand. If we instead work to uproot the constructs that have shaped their faulty thinking and plant constructs for new thinking, then we shift our focus from defeating people to freeing people.


Our strategy and goal must remain pursuing relationship.


  1. Avatar Brendan Bain, MD, MPH on July 3, 2023 at 6:02 pm

    Dear Nicole:
    Thank you for your blog.
    I am writing from Jamaica, where the influence of media emanating from the USA is very strong. We ask for prayer that we will not succumb to the messages coming from North America. It is surprising that persons with university education can be so easily deceived by the gender fluidity theories.
    Am I correct in thinking that only a few persons in the USA are able to afford the surgery and medication to support and maintain their artificial gender change? Media reports seem to give the impression that the numbers are quite large.

  2. Nicole Hayes Nicole Hayes on July 5, 2023 at 10:15 am

    Dear Dr. Bain,

    Thank you for greeting us from Jamaica and for your comment submitted in response to my blog post. Thank you for your work in caring for patients dealing with HIV/AIDS. In response to your question and in speaking with our expert physicians on this issue, procedures are often covered by state Medicaid, and insurance companies have increasingly been supportive of them. However, we believe this harms for more than it helps those struggling with gender dysphoria.

  3. Nicole Hayes Nicole Hayes on July 5, 2023 at 10:18 am

    *We believe this harms far more than it helps those struggling with gender dysphoria.”

  4. Avatar Mary Pearson DO on July 8, 2023 at 7:04 pm

    Thank you Nicole, for an excellent blog! It can be scary to step outside our comfort zones, and yet it feels like I need to do that all day in ministry. God is so faithful, he is our rock, and our fortress!

    My mother often reminds me that God is a God of order and that Satan is the author of confusion. Sometimes that is a quick way to sort out what we are dealing with!

    • Nicole Hayes Nicole Hayes on July 8, 2023 at 8:33 pm

      Dr. Pearson,

      Thank you for your comment. Glad that the message blessed you and has perhaps further encouraged you to step out of your comfort zone to reach others with the gospel–those who are stuck in the quicksand of confusion. God is indeed faithful, our rock and our fortress! He is with us! Praise God! Your mom is right in what she said. The Kingdom of God and the prince of this world (Satan) are very distinct in how they operate.

  5. Avatar Craig Nakatsuka on August 7, 2023 at 7:19 pm

    Well done essay, Nicole!
    I was reflecting upon the major physician debates I had in various forums, including the state legislature, with the 3 pro-PAS MDs. Though I vigorously debated hard and strong for my position, I began to think of how I could grow in my character by seeking for the flourishing of that individual “on the other side”.

    It wasn’t easy, especially with one who was an intimidating former Harvard/Radcliffe debater. But I managed to find some word of encouragement specific to each individual, including the leaning into his Christian faith for one of them who had stage IV ca.

    Eventually over time, our respect and relationship deepened such that one of them asked for me to visit him as he was dying of his disease.

    Everyone has been made in God’s image. We can lovingly seek the best for that person no matter their stance, and let the Holy Spirit do the rest

    • Nicole Hayes Nicole Hayes on August 8, 2023 at 1:24 pm

      Hi, and thank you, Dr. Nakatsuka! I also appreciate your experience shared here in how your witness was made more possible because of the relationship that had developed–and to allow the Holy Spirit to do the rest. Praise God! You are a blessing there in Hawaii.


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