Thursday, July 4, 2013

Solemn Acts Of Devotion

Around the 4th of July, we all get to feeling a bit more patriotic than usual, celebrating with flags lining Main Street, parades, and even red white and blue flip flops. America has been a great country enjoying freedom for 237 years.

 My favorite preacher, who happens to be my husband and is very patriotic, spoke a while back on the solemn acts of devotion of our country’s founding fathers.  I was inspired and thought I’d share some of what he spoke about. (I will put his words in quotes to give credit where credit is due.)

56 men signed the Declaration of Independence.  I have always admired these men, but never realized just what it meant for them to put their “John Hancock” on that document of 1,321 words.

“Each of these men was willing to sacrifice everything for a cause they believed in and history shows that they paid a price for that bravery.” 

These men endured great hardships.  For some of them, businesses were destroyed… families were harassed and ran for their lives….homes and properties were ransacked, burned and lost… Some went into great debt to fund the war… some were captured and tortured…and some even lost their own sons in the war. Stop for a moment and ponder this. Would you and I be willing to risk our home, and family’s safety for a cause? Would we risk our jobs and businesses to stand up for what we believe in?

“And though few of them benefited from their bravery, and most lost everything they owned, not one recanted his original declaration of independence.  These men were courageous and valiant and brave and because of them and others, we have the privilege of being here today, and living in the greatest country of the world.” These men did not directly benefit from their sacrifices, but they knew their descendants would one day benefit.

John Adams said of observing the 4th of July, “it ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.”

“Preserving American liberty depends first upon our understanding the foundations on which this great country was built and then preserving the principles on which it was founded. Woodrow Wilson once declared, ‘A nation which does not remember what it was yesterday does not know what it is today or what it is trying to do.’ ”

 As I mull this over in my head, I see a parallel with my Christian walk. My life ought to be a series of solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty.  I stand among the ones whose names are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.  A price was paid for the freedom that brings and I have a mission to preserve that so others may hear and benefit as well.

Am I willing to endure the things these men went through?  Don’t I give in to much smaller pressures?

Am I willing to sacrifice my life, my comforts, my conveniences, my home for a cause I believe in? My Savior paid the price for my sin, am I willing to give my life back to Him?

I don’t always see the benefit here and now, but I need to remember the cause of my life and not recant. Will others have the privilege of knowing Christ because of my bravery in sacrificing my life to point them to Christ?

I have to remember what I once was, who I am in Christ and what I am to do here on earth…. My life ought to be a characterized by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. A daily celebration of Him.


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