Thoughts of a messed up Christian saved by God's grace

Thursday, July 14, 2016

I am a patriotic Christian

  There are a lot of people starting to almost condemn patriotism..... and some just outright condemn it. They say we idolize our country and freedoms, that there is no place for love of country and patriotism for a Christian. One blogger who is a pastor with no church was knocking patriotism and God shedding His grace on America. He claimed God doesn't even see America. I couldn't really follow his reasoning, but this is the same man who says there is no hell and spends most of his time propagating a pro-gay theology and ranting against Christians for believing and saying homosexuality is a sin.

  Most of the people I see pushing this "patriotism and love of country is idolization and wrong" stuff seem to be liberal Christians. I am not sure what the connection is there, but if I had to make an educated guess, it would be this: These are the same people who are OK with abortion, homosexuality, who are against the Second Amendment, and other such things Christian conservatives believe. They tie a lot of these in with our love of this country and what it was founded on, and with our freedoms. But if it is wrong to love America and our freedoms, than it doesn't matter what happens to our freedoms....or something along that line. Liberals are hard to make sense of, and liberals who claim to be Christians are even more difficult.

  I went to church Sunday morning July 3. We sang our usual three songs for the worship service, and two of them were patriotic ones: America the Beautiful and My Country Tis of Thee. We then pledged to the American flag and continued the worship service.

  There are those who would be horrified at that. Patriotic songs in church, an American flag on the platform (there is also a Christian flag) -  and gasp!!! - a pledge to the flag. I, and many others have no problem with that. I actually enjoy it.

     I believe Christians should be patriotic. In fact, maybe we should be the most patriotic of Americans. This country we live in was founded so we could have the freedom to worship as we please. Many who have gone on before us fought to keep America free, fought to keep us free to worship as we please, and for other freedoms. Should we Christians not appreciate that even more than non-Christians and not just want to celebrate Independence Day, but need to celebrate this day set aside to celebrate freedom? Should we not be the most ardent supporters of our military and the most faithful supporters of days like Veteran's Day, Flag day, Independence Day, and other such holidays set aside to honor those who gave their lives to make and keep this a free country?

   Some former friends of mine attended a very liberal Mennonite church for a while. This church was no different from any other church, except they were non-resistance as the conservative Mennonites. Mennonites, Quakers, and other such people do not believe in fighting in wars, in defending oneself, patriotism, These former friends of mine said it felt so weird on patriotic holidays because there was no mention of our country, no patriotic songs sung.....nothing to indicate the day was any different from other days.

  I actually take issue with that. No, I don't want to kill anyone, nor do I want to be in the military. If I had to do it though, I would. I want and need to appreciate our military and what they and those who served before us do and have done to keep our country free and safe. Could it even be our Christian duty to thank and appreciate what has been done to keep us free and safe? Is it possible by ignoring patriotism and patriotic holidays, we are shirking our duty as Christians? I am not saying that is true, just asking.

   As these liberal Christians knock patriotism and accuse us of idolatry, they are not only idolizing other things such as sports, entertainment, etc; they are also trying to excuse the infringement of our freedoms and the moral decay as liberal policies destroy our country and morals.

   And it IS possible to put country above God. This whole idea that we must set aside the religious reasons for not voting for Trump are being knocked by fellow Christians. They tell us we must vote for the lesser of two evils and refuse to admit we have good reason as Christians to NOT vote for a lesser of two evils. They are saying we should put our country and freedoms above God, although they would never look at it that way.

 I am thankful for our country, for those who gave their lives to make and keep us a free country. The least I can do is observe and celebrate the days we have set aside as a country to be thankful for and celebrate the freedoms they fought and died for. I am a Christian, and I am patriotic.

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