“But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” Jeremiah 29:7
Happy Birthday, America!
This weekend, we celebrate our nation’s birth—not because our nation is perfect—but because our founding 244 years ago was the down payment on the promise of self-governance that could improve our nation over time.
That bold statement is possible because our Founding Fathers provided the longest-lasting framework of government in which “We the People” have the privilege and responsibility to exercise our rights as citizens “in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, promote the general Welfare and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.” (Preamble to the U.S. Constitution)
As citizens, those rights include the freedoms of religion, assembly, protest, praising and criticizing our government, advancing good policies and electing godly men and women to office, as well as opposing harmful policies, unjust court decisions and helping unfit politicians find other employment—to name a few.
In the last two weeks, we have seen many exercise those rights to protest and criticize our government, which includes the Supreme Court failing to protect and promote the sanctity of human life (June Medical v. Russo), and failing to protect the religious freedom of Christian business owners (Bostock v. Clayton County).
These rulings are added to other monumental decisions that have plagued our nation, the most obvious being Roe v. Wade in 1973, which allowed abortion on demand, and Obergefell v. Hodges in 2015, which redefined marriage.
In the aftermath of such frustrating outcomes, it can be easy to lose heart and think that the erosion of our values is unstoppable.
But to believe that is short-sighted in terms of our faith and even our own history.
Scripture encourages us to “. . . not grow weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Gal. 6:9). Believers have persistently and victoriously engaged our unique system of government in many ways to protect life, uphold God’s design for family, and ensure religious freedom—particularly at the state level.
Because of the diligent perseverance of God’s people to “seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare” (Jer. 29:7), we have seen powerful and long-lasting change spring from seeds planted years ago!
Consider even the last 47 years in which pro-life Americans have worked tirelessly to protect babies in the womb and their mothers from abortion. While we still work and pray for the day when Roe is repealed entirely, we have seen federal, and especially, state laws shift the culture to one that is more pro-life than in recent memory.
Laws such as informed consent, waiting periods, bans on partial-birth abortion, bans on abortions performed solely because of the baby’s sex or a prenatal diagnosis such as Down syndrome, and basic healthcare regulations on abortion facilities have shifted public opinion and saved lives.
But a look even further back shows that our nation and system of government are able to redress grievances—even if that remains a work in progress. We fought a civil war and invalidated two of the most infamous Supreme Court rulings (Dred Scott v. Sandford and Brown v. Board of Education) to affirm the words that birthed our nation in 1776:
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,
that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights,
that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
And so, on this 244th birthday, We the People can be proud to be Americans and thankful for the freedoms we enjoy. As “citizens of heaven,” we bear an even greater responsibility to press forward for a nation where God is honored, religious freedom flourishes, families thrive and life is cherished.
Here at Family Policy Alliance, we pray daily for the Lord’s strength to be faithful in our work, and to trust Him for the outcomes, even if they are a long time in coming. And we are grateful for your partnership in that work and your prayers for our nation.
May you and your loved ones enjoy the celebrations and reflect on our many blessings this Independence Day weekend!
Standing for the family of believers,