On March 11, 1782, George Washington stated these words: “I’m sure there never was a people who had more reason to acknowledge a Divine interposition in their affairs than those of the United States.”
Andrew Jackson in his farewell address on March 4, 1837, declared: “Providence has bestowed on this favored land blessings without number, and has chosen you as the guardians of freedom, to preserve it for the benefit of the human race. May He who holds the destinies of nations make you worthy of the favors He has bestowed and enable you, with pure hearts and pure hands and sleepless vigilance, to guard and defend to the end of time the great charge He has committed to your keeping.”
Patrick Henry, great Revolutionary leader gave this powerful challenge on March 23, 1773: “It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death.”
As we embrace America’s 245th Liberty Celebration we must remember the strong foundations upon which the nation’s first patriots stood. Let’s renew our loving commitment to “the stars and stripes forever” as we broadly wave our tri-colored flag. Let’s afresh embrace our unbeatable Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights. Let’s proudly repeat our “one nation under God” Pledge of Allegiance.
If we fail to remember, our present will be infinitely less enjoyable and our future sadly less enduring. Proverbs 14:34 still holds, “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.” We must continue to have as our motto “In God We Trust.” Perhaps we are closer again to Patrick Henry’s time when it’s liberty or death! May the Lord strengthen us to choose wisely.
Till next time,
-Don Johnson, Kirby Pines Chaplain