by Pastor Larry Sorrells, Rockville, Trinity UMC

Two American friends were visiting Brazil. One of them was overwhelmed by the lush beauty of the land. “With all these resources, why hasn’t South America been able to achieve what North America has?” he asked his friend.

“I don’t know for sure, but I believe the history of the two continents might hold an answer to that question,” his  friend stated.

He explained that in looking at the history of the two areas, he discovered that South America was settled by people who were seeking gold, so they could take the wealth and resources of the land away with them. But North America was settled by people who were first and foremost seeking God.

I do share in the opinion that much of our nation’s greatness is due to the fact that it was founded on the principles of religious freedom and the search for God instead of the search for gold and treasure. The beginnings of our country are a living example of Jesus’ words: “ But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you,” (Matthew 6:33). To the degree that we have put God first, other things that have made for a good life here have been added to us.

So, as a Christian, what do I owe my country? First of all, respect, honor, and devotion to the spiritual values that we do hold on to and have made our country great, and secondly, the dedication of my life to those same spiritual values by putting God first and doing my part to keep us on that Godly spiritual path. May God not only bless America, but also make her a blessing to all other nations. Happy Fourth of July.

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