Tag Archives: USA

Calm in the Raging Storm

Have you ever wondered what true contentment feels like? How do we find the proverbial calm in the midst of the storm? Does such calm even exist?

Naples, FL Sunset - July 2012

Naples, FL Sunset – July 2012

Over the past week or so, I’ve been very agitated over events currently facing our country. In observing the behavior of our government officials, those whom we elected to office, my anger often supersedes the attitude and outlook that I, as a Christian, know I should have. My anger and frustration is fueled even more when I see how we Americans treat each other with disrespect, anger, and disdain that seems to draw, at times, dangerously close to downright hatred. I worry about the future of our country. I worry about the condition in which my generation is leaving our country for our children and grandchildren. Worry, worry, worry! Out of the genuine concern I feel for my country comes emotions and words that, at times, I wish had never manifested.

For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. ~ Romans 8:38-39

Amidst my storm of worry, I open God’s Word. Therein resides the eternal calm in the midst of the temporal storm in which I find myself living day after day. Yes, our nation is in crisis; I truly believe that. But even in crisis, God reigns supreme. You see, my human frailty – the sinful nature that resides in each of us – causes me to say and do things that I know I shouldn’t do. Sin has that effect on each of us. When I say and do those things, not only do I help advance the problem at hand, I lose sight of the real prize that has already been won in my behalf through Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior. When I lose sight of the prize, I try to fight the storm on my own and I lose my way in the process. Thank God for His love, His mercy, and His Holy Word! Through His Word, I am reminded that, no matter what happens in government and no matter what the future holds for our country, I have eternal life through the death and resurrection of Jesus and nothing can take that away.

Hollywood Beach, outside of Ocean Pub 101, Hollywood, FL ~ July 24, 2013

Hollywood Beach, outside of Ocean Pub 101, Hollywood, FL ~ July 24, 2013

Through Christ, I am equipped to respond appropriately when crisis rears its ugly head. Rather than stir the pot and contribute to the problem, I am equipped to rise above the fray and offer a voice of calm reason in the midst of the raging storm. The sinful nature that resides within me, and in all of us, will sometimes cause me to stumble. The Holy Spirit will convict me of those times, compel me to confess them, and help me to repent so I can get back to the work that God has called me to do.

The love of God, manifested in Christ Jesus our Lord, is the calm in the midst of the storm. If you don’t know Him, contact me or reach out to a Christian friend – we’ll be glad to introduce you. If you do know Him and find yourself overwhelmed by the storms of this life, go into God’s Word and be reminded of your salvation; stop trying to fight the storm on your own! Then join me as I renew my commitment to being a positive influence, with my foundation in God’s Word, on my nation and all with whom I come into contact.

My prayer for today: Heavenly Father, As I review some of my posts and communiqués over the past several days I realize that I have not honored You as I know I should. In doing so, I am part of the problem. Forgive me of this and all of my sins and guide me to true repentance. In so doing, help me to be an effective witness for You, that through my words and actions, others would see You. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.

Independence Day 2013 ~ A Promise

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

~ Declaration of Independence, closing paragraph

This image was selected as a picture of the we...

This image was selected as a picture of the week on the Malay Wikipedia for the 26th week, 2010. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On July 4, 1776, our founding fathers signed what I believe is one of the greatest documents ever authored by humanity. Today we celebrate the signing of our Declaration of Independence – the document that marks the birth of the great nation we call the United States of America.

By this Declaration and our subsequent victory in the Revolutionary War, we gained the status of a truly independent nation. With that status comes rights and responsibilities shared by each of us whose citizenship resides with these United States of America.

Our greatest responsibility is to protect and defend this great nation; to preserve the freedoms that so many have fought and died to win and preserve. The colonists sought freedom from oppression and freedom from the tyranny of an overreaching government. These men fought and died so that individuals were free to pursue their God-given rights, among those being life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

I often wonder what our founding fathers would think about today’s America. Would they be proud? Or would they be troubled? Are we fulfilling our obligation to defend the freedoms that so many have fought and died to win and preserve over the years? If they could speak to us today, what would they say to us?

English: Abraham Lincoln, president of the Uni...

English: Abraham Lincoln, president of the United States of America. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I believe that the greatest threat to any organization, be it a club, a company or a country, comes from within. When a group loses focus on it’s commonalities – it’s mutual goals and objectives – it begins to break apart. President Abraham Lincoln once said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand…” I believe he hit the nail on the head.

Today’s immediacy of communication via cable television and the Internet is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because, treated responsibly, these media can facilitate a level of communication and discourse among the American people that was never before possible. It’s a curse because it facilitates an unprecedented level of personal attacks and abuse. Many issues are before us as a nation about which most of us hold passionate and often opposing views. To support our positions and further the causes we hold dear, we take to the Internet. Sadly, our discourse often quickly degenerates into nothing more than personal attacks and cheap name-calling. The issues get lost in the mudslinging, and we contribute to the breaking apart of our nation. If we, the people of this great land, participate in this lowest level of discourse, we are guilty of ripping apart the fabric of this nation so carefully sewn together on July 4, 1776. And at some point, America will no longer be free.

English: Flag of the United States of America ...

English: Flag of the United States of America Deutsch: Flagge der Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Make no mistake; people will disagree and we are only human. The fact that we disagree is not a problem; the manner in which we often address those with whom we disagree is very troubling. On this Independence Day, will you join me in a promise? Will you join me in promising to discuss the issues, and only the issues? We will disagree, sometimes passionately, and that’s OK. We are free to disagree and passionately discuss the issues of our disagreements! But as we do so, let us always bear at the front of our minds the sacrifices made by so many who came before us. Let us not disrespect those sacrifices by tearing each other down; rather, let us honor their sacrifices by standing shoulder-to-shoulder for the common good of this great land, even as we disagree.

Happy Independence Day!

And I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free.
And I won’t forget the men who died and gave that right to me.
And I’d gladly stand up next to you and defend her still today.
‘Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land. God bless the USA!

~ Lee Greenwood

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