Happy Birthday America?

Today is the two hundred-forty-eighth anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the document that declared the colonies’ independence from the mother country. At great risk and personal sacrifice, the colonists fought for almost eight years to become free from the oppression of the British monarchy.

The founding fathers who declared independence from England in 1776 realized their lives and possessions were at great risk. At the close of that eight-year war, many widows were left to raise their fatherless children. Truly, our country was founded on the sacrifices and blood of thousands of men whose names we will never know. 

How did our Constitution come about? For three months in sweltering Philadelphia heat fifty-five men met to produce the constitution of the United States of America, the outline of how our country would function under three separate branches of government. At the insistence of the colonies, a Bill of Rights (amendments 1-10) was added before approval. Those amendments include freedom of speech and religion, the right to bear arms, and freedom from unlawful search and seizure of property.

Ben Franklin, at 81, was by far the oldest delegate at the Constitutional Convention. Once the lengthy debates for approval in the state conventions were over and the thirteen colonies became the United States of America, Franklin said something to the effect, “ Now we have a republic, let’s see if we can keep it.” Franklin was wise, knowing about human nature and the threat our form of government would be to the power-hungry within and outside our borders.

We are a “free” people because of the courage and sacrifices of the freedom-loving founders of our nation. Independence Day is supposed to help us remember that fact.

Through the decades that followed the Declaration of Independence, brave soldiers have left home and family to bear arms against the forces of tyranny and evil. Many never came back, buried on foreign soils.

Several years ago I stood at the Viet Nam Memorial in D.C. and traced the name of a family member. That black granite wall also contains two names of high school and college classmates, young men in their early twenties.

Very few things have emphasized the cost paid for my freedoms as the view of ten thousand white crosses at our national cemetery in Normandy, France. My eyes brimmed with tears and my heart was filled with an overwhelming sense of awe, sadness, and gratitude. These young men laid it all down for us and the preservation of freedom in Europe.

Our freedom isn’t free. I’m concerned that we have become so ignorant, lazy, forgetful, and arrogant that we are about to lose much of what others loved to the point of sacrificing their lives.

While I’m concerned about the threats posed by China, Russia, Iran, or Korea, I believe our greatest peril lies within. I think we are committing national suicide. We have a spiritual problem that is going to destroy us if we do not correct it.  

The founding fathers understood that only a moral people could maintain the republic government for which so many have died. In many ways, we have abandoned the spiritual foundations on which our republic was founded.

This path toward national suicide hasn’t happened overnight. However, the last few years have accelerated our march to the national graveyard. Little by little we have abandoned God and His Laws. For example, we have godless laws promoting the killing of the innocent. We have been deceived into idolatry by exchanging materialism for the One True God. Scandals at a national level seem to be the norm. 

And, whatever happened to “common sense”?   Our national soul is in trouble. We are in dire need of repentance and a return to an emphasis on godly character. It’s time for all believers to wake up to the reality of our gradual slide to destruction. God is our hope and help.

 Washington, Franklin, Jefferson, the Adamses, Madison, Monroe, Paine, and many who sacrificed for our freedoms would be grateful to know we can benefit from what they fought for. Should they speak to us from their graves,  I think they would be greatly concerned that we may take lightly what they have given us. We must not allow ourselves and our country to drift away from the spiritual moorings, the foundations of this great nation.

We should never presume our hard-earned freedoms are secured because we raise the flag, shoot fireworks, and celebrate with family gatherings on this one day. We must remain vigilant and not allow ourselves to drift or become lazy about defending and standing up for those principles that make this a great country. President Ronald warned us about careless drifting, 


 The bottom line is that our country has been dangerously drifting away from biblical teaching and those principles that have made us a great nation. How has this “drifting” away from God happened? Some point their finger at the public education system, while others blame the government’s brainwashing and takeover of what used to be considered the responsibilities of family, church, and community.

Here’s what I think is part of the problem, perhaps the heart of the issue. It comes down to individual responsibility to whether or not you and I are committed to practicing what we preach, to live out the teachings of Jesus in our lives.

Have we allowed ourselves to become so comfortable and distracted by our prosperity that we have forgotten why we are here? Here’s an article I saw recently that speaks to the issue of drifting away from Jesus http://beautifulchristianlife.com/blog/the-danger-of-drifting-away-from-jesus/

Happy Birthday, America! 

4 thoughts on “Happy Birthday America?

  1. Cos,

    Thanks for this timely message – I need to make sure that I have my captain in the boat with me when I begin to drift haphazardly in the wrong direction. We have been trying to find a new church home and really need God’s steering for us to follow his lead.

    1. Thanks for your response. The decision and process you have before you are certainly important and fraught with potentially great possibilities and consequences. I appreciate your sensitivity to the need for the Lord’s leadership in your life. Pray for you and Janet often. Cos

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *