One Nation Under God
Each morning I wake up and go through the morning routines of feeding the horses, getting the girls ready for the day and heading off to work. It’s the mundane everyday tasks like these that nearly everyone goes through each morning, but how many of us stop to really think about how we got here?
As I take on my daily tasks and live out each day I’m struck by one thought:
Everything we do is colored with the knowledge that somewhere, people we know are putting their lives on the line to keep our country free. It may not show in how we drive or sometimes how we treat others around us, but when you pass a church, or someone’s home flying an American flag out front, a twinge of recognition passes through us as if to say, “Only in America.” It’s that warm comfortable feeling that comes with the knowing certainty that we are safe and secure; that things are generally under control and stable in the world around us.
We don’t pay tribute to a king or queen; we don’t serve a pope, a mullah, or struggle under the iron fist of a tyrant. (Though some may say that we are, they are speaking metaphorically and from a political agenda; not through any real fear of actual tyranny) We are free to either reject or embrace those young gentlemen in ties who come to the door every now and then either extolling the virtues of their prophets or bearing pamphlets about rapture and such. Nobody forces our hand and we are not beholden to anyone’s theology that is not our own and we have the right to speak freely and without fear. If I were to curse our President, nobody comes knocking on my door. If I were to curse a policeman, nobody hauls me off to jail. We are the only country in the world where all such freedoms exist to provide us with that sense of comfort, warmth and wellbeing that come with knowing without a doubt that the country you live in has a solid foundation that supports all of these freedoms.
Why is it that passing a church elicits in me the same feelings as passing an American flag? In today’s world, religions of all kinds are under direct assault. Christians are murdered for their faith, Muslims are likewise killed by other Muslims for having different religious views, Jews are reviled and murdered the world over for the mere offence of existing on this planet, Monks of various faiths are subjected to genocide or persecution from various regimes within the Asian continent simply for their beliefs as well. In our world today, entire nations do their best to stamp out and eliminate any religion they do not agree with. Try reading the bible aloud in Saudi Arabia, Iran, or even China and you will very quickly find yourself in prison or dead.
Any church or building of worship on any street in America is completely free to express their beliefs and follow their own path according to their own theology. This freedom to express and worship any religion is the single most fundamental principal upon which our nation was built and remains the cornerstone of its very existence. Passing a church of any kind reminds me of that fundamental principal and the nation it spawned.
As a nation we gave ourselves these rights, and the blood of our forefathers sealed them forever in our hearts and minds as God-given rights; born of blood, sacrifice, and dedication; purchased anew with each bold new generation of Soldiers, Sailors & Airmen who stand proudly with vigilance and sometimes battle to renew that bond of blood; their sacred promise to all of their countrymen: “We stand as Americans at the gates of freedom as a bulwark against the tide of tyranny that surges across the globe. The American way of life; our precious liberty is paid in full by the blood of our ancestors, our parents, our siblings and even our children who serve in the US Armed Forces: We are the American fighting force and the path to freedom is paved with our blood.”
One Nation, under God.