Freely Worship

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

We stand collective on the brink of summer. Memorial Day is upon us. Not all Americans have seen the relationship between patriotism and religion the same way. Mark Twain was one of the more skeptical observers of his day. 

“It is agreed, in this country, that if a person can arrange their religion so that it perfectly satisfies their conscience, it is not incumbent upon them to care whether the arrangement is satisfactory to anyone else or not. In Austria and some other countries this is not the case. There the state arranges a person’s religion for them, they have no voice in it themselves. Patriotism is merely a religion–love of country, worship of country, devotion to the country’s flag and honor and welfare. In absolute monarchies it is furnished from the throne, cut and dried, to the subject; in England and America it is furnished, cut and dried, to the citizen by the politician in the newspaper. The newspaper-and–politician–manufactured patriot often gags in private over their dose; but they take it and keep it in their stomach the best they can. Blessed are the meek.” Mark Twain “As Regards Patriotism”

I am not sure I agree completely with Mr. Twain but he makes me think and I appreciate that. How do you regard Patriotism? May that be one of the core questions we each travel through life with. For many lives have been sacrificed that we might have the freedom to ask that question. Let us remember this Memorial Day weekend all the men and women who gave their lives that we might freely worship together in the name of Jesus the Christ who gave his life for the entire world and rose again that we might be embraced in eternal love.

See John 3:16 for further reflection.

Prayers: Let us pause to remember all the soldiers who have sacrificed for our freedoms. May we also remember all those who went before us and handed the story of the gospel on to us. For Wendy Saathoff. her family and all who mourn the death of her father Jim.

 Still in One Peace,

Pastor DJ

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