I was blessed to be born in the United States of America where among many privileges, I am free to practice my religion, free to speak, free to participate in the election of people I believe represent me, and protected from discrimination.
These privileges are granted to me through our U.S. Constitution written by our founding fathers. Sure, not all of the privileges were immediately realized by all, but eventually we got there.
I count myself as blessed to have been born at the time – late 50s, and place, New Orleans Louisiana of the United States – that I was born. I somehow escaped the brutality of the civil rights movement and was able to instead receive the benefits of those who fought to get the rights afforded through our constitution realized.
And hath made of one blood all nations of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation, Acts 17:26
Because I am a Christian, I do see everything through a biblical worldview and believe with my whole being, that God determined when, and where I would be born just as stated by the scripture above.
Why do I believe that I have been spoiled in America? Because I have never really been persecuted for my faith and I attribute that mostly to our nation’s constitution. I wrote a post about this sometime ago in I Am in Debt. Protection from persecution is not what was promised to me as a follower of Christ; even though I embraced that protection, and more than likely held on too tightly.
As a follower of Jesus Christ, Jesus said:
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. 19 If ye were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. John 15:18,19 KJV
Later, as Jesus was preparing his disciples for his departure, he tells them:
….In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. John 16:33b
This reminded me of the biblical historical account of the freedoms and privileges afforded the children of Israel in Egypt during Joseph’s rule granted by Pharaoh. But once Joseph died and there was a new king, their freedoms and privileges ceased and hard times followed.
This election has caused me to really evaluate, and ponder the direction of our country, while reflecting on my Christian faith. I describe my reflections in I Am Scared. It is because I believe our country is spiraling downward that I’ve been forced me to remember the scriptures that tell me that I am like a traveler passing through; that I am not at home.
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, I Peter 2:11
For our |citizenship| is in heaven, from which also we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, Philippians 3:20
I hope these scriptures will help keep me grounded as I see my country go through more growing pains and seemingly become more polarized.
I discussed this with fellow blogger, The Daddy Blitz. He has been a great sounding board as I worked through this. He is a great writer, an attorney, a Christian, and a married father of five boys who blogs on religion, family and politics. Check him out too.
He and I discussed my reflections and struggles, and whether as Christians we should try to legislate our Christian moral values. It was through this discussion that I realized that although our country was founded upon Christian principles, I now recognize that that was a grace of God. Like in Joseph’s time, that grace may have just been for a time, and for a season.
Principles, even values change when not anchored to some objective standard that doesn’t change like the Bible.
So yes, I have been spoiled in America because I began to see these privileges and rights as something that I was entitled to, forgetting that I am a traveler, an ambassador, and as stated in the scriptures, this place is not my home. I am here to represent God and fulfill the charge he has given which is to live for him, to love my neighbor, and to share the gospel as I travel through.