Joshua 4:6 that this may be a sign among you when your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’ Then you shall answer them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it crossed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. And these stones shall be for a memorial to the children of Israel forever.”
Next Monday (June 14) is flag day. Flag day is a memorial of the day congress approved the stars and stripes as our standard. I bring this up because Dewey Moedey of KKIM asked me today; "What has happened to patriotism in America?" This question should give us pause.
I believe there are forces at work to undermine our national identity. America (and by extension, it's flag) is unique in the pages of history. Due to an ongoing effort to remove Christianity from our founders and our history, it has become necessary to extinguish the Spirit that accompanies our patriotism.
John Adams believed that the fourth of July should become a religious holiday, a day when we remembered God's hand in deliverance and day of religious activities when we committed ourselves to Him in "solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty."
His son and sixth president of the United States, John Quincy Adams, asked; "Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer's mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity?"
Patriotism (not to be confused with nationalism) at its best, is exemplified by selflessness. Have you ever wondered why the phrase is 'God and country'? When we seek the Lord and His kingdom, we lay aside self. We set aside the "me first" attitude and we love the Lord and then others. Christian patriotism seeks create a better country for all to live as equals. That is why the motto for the American revolution was "No King but King Jesus" and "Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God".
The American spirit flows from the Holy Spirit. If we want to see patriotism return, we must as a nation, return to God. The bible tells us to not seek what is best for us over what is best for others, but rather look to the needs of others first and then ourselves. How much better would the world around us become, if we lived that way. Raise your flags this weekend as a reminder of how Americans should live. Tell your children of the sacrifices made for our freedom. If you don't know any stories, find them. When you tell them, point out the moral. Turn off the TV more and share what is good.
Happy Flag Day!