This week is one that is celebrated heartily in the United States. Office workers take vacations to the beach; beach dwellers leave for the mountains; grills across the land are fired up and delicious food is cooked, to add to the groaning tables of veggies and sides that are prepared by loving and happy hands.
Why all the fuss? It's Independence Day and week! We are celebrating our God-given blessings of freedom -- the freedom to share our opinions, the freedom to worship, to defend our "castle" (home), and much more. I'd like to widen the circle here, though, and bring in folks from other countries, as well. Let me explain my thoughts today . . .
(II Chronicles 7:14)
The words recorded here are from God, spoken to Solomon after the completion and dedication of the temple, complete with sacrifices, festivals, and worship. But they apply equally to us today, whether we are in the United States or the United Kingdom or anywhere else on this earth! Remember what Peter wrote to the believers?
We are the people of God, a nation of believers, no matter where we live. Check out this verse in II Corinthians:
As the people of God, we look around us and we see so many things that need "fixing" in our countries, and in the world. Our nations are in trouble! The list of sins and problems just keeps on growing, doesn't it? We see that nearly four in ten pregnancies in America are ended by abortion, and the other countries' statistics are similar. Pornography is rampant, and is a leading cause of domestic abuse, divorce, and child abuse. Illegal drugs are a scourge on the population, and alcohol wrecks families every day. Greed and vice are everywhere.
I'm painting a dark picture, I know. But there are rays of sunlight -- there is hope! In the midst of all this heartbreak, walk the people of God. And we can make a difference!
Today as we in America celebrate, I hope that we'll remember the God who blessed this land so liberally. That we'll pray and praise Him.
And I hope you will join me this week as we study.