A few weeks ago, my wife said, “Since I was a little girl, I have wanted to see the Liberty Bell.” We have seen so many wonderful sights around the world and the United States, it just did not seem right that we had failed to see the Liberty Bell. Becky’s sister and her husband, happen to be among our best friends and live not far from Philadelphia. They set everything up for us and it was just great to be with them.
As we planned our visit, there was a lot to pack in to the weekend visit. Philadelphia is home of the First Continental Congress, the Revolutionary War Museum, the Faith and Liberty Discovery Center, the National Museum of American Jewish History, and Valley Forge is just outside of the city. And I had to run the “Rocky Steps!” Becky got to see the world’s largest pipe organ.
One of the wonderful experiences was attending the 246th anniversary of the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence. The re-enactors made it all come alive. Some were loyal to Britain and others were fiercely separatists. There was cheering and hissing as a patriot read the Declaration. The last sentence I said along with the public reader. “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.”
Yes, I am a patriot. Patriotism is the responsible stewardship and participation as a citizen of this nation. I love America. If you are Belgen or Belges, hopefully you love Belgium. If you are Argentine, hopefully you love Argentina. To be a patriot is to recognize the grace and hand of God at work in your nation. It is to do the good work of working to be a blessing and to give back to the land of your birth. President Kennedy, said it well, “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
We can start by praying for our country. Prayer will do more to shape, protect, preserve and revive our nation than any political strategy. Take time to read and reflect upon Solomon’s prayer for the nation of Israel. It will instruct and inspire you to pray for America! (See 2 Chronicles 6:12-42)