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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Thoughts for Spiritual Sunday

It's Sunday morning, and I'm not going to say anything that you would hear in church today. It isn't a prayer, not really, but it could become a prayer. The God that has blessed this nation, the God that inspired the writing of the Holy Bible, and the God that influenced the founding fathers to give us the Constitution of this great nation, is slowly being eliminated from our lives as a country. Falling on our knees in prayer may move the heart of God to shed His grace on us.

On July 4th, when our pastor quoted part of a speech made by President Ronald Reagan, I wrote it down so I could post it for the holiday. Then I decided to look deeper for more of what this man had to say about our country, and what I found surprised me to some degree, partly because at the time, I was a young mom not too concerned about politics, so I wasn't paying attention. I learned that his heart dictated what came out of his mouth, and he wasn't shy about telling the world that his heart belonged to the Lord.

I really hope you will take a few minutes to read all the way through, and I hope that your heart is touched by the truth of Mr. Reagan's message, and the last message of this post, which explains it all. I've added a wonderful Youtube video of the Gaither Vocal Band singing "America the Beautiful" at the bottom, for you to enjoy this Sunday.


"We stand together as we did two centuries ago… One people under God determined that our future shall be worthy of our past." President Ronald Reagan, Jan. 21, 1985

“Whatever else history may say about me when I’m gone, I hope it will record that I appealed to your best hopes, not your worst fears, to your confidence rather than your doubts. My dream is that you will travel the road ahead with liberty’s lamp guiding your steps and opportunity’s arm steadying your way. My fondest hope for each one of you—and especially for the young people here—is that you will love your country, not for her power or wealth, but for her selflessness and her idealism. May each of you have the heart to conceive, the understanding to direct, and the hand to execute works that will make the world a little better for your having been here. May all of you as Americans never forget your heroic origins, never fail to seek divine guidance and never lose your natural, God-given optimism. And finally, my fellow Americans, may every dawn be a great new beginning for America and every evening bring us closer to that shining city upon a hill.” Ronald Reagan (1992)



"We've got to do a better job of getting across that America is freedom -- freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom of enterprise. And freedom is special and rare. ... I'm warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit." 1989 farewell address.

"Freedom is a fragile thing and is never more than one generation away from extinction. It is not ours by inheritance; it must be fought for and defended constantly by each generation, for it comes only once to a people. Those who have known freedom, and then lost it, have never known it again."

"America was born in the midst of a great revolution sparked by oppressive taxation. There was something about the American character—open, hard-working, and honest—that rebelled at the very thought of taxes that were not only heavy but unfair. Today the proud American character remains unchanged. But slowly and subtly, surrendering first to this political pressure and then to that, our system of taxation has turned into something completely foreign to our nature—something complicated, unfair, and, in a fundamental sense, un-American. Well, my friends, the time has come for a second American revolution."

At a 1984 prayer breakfast, Mr. Reagan stated: "Without God, there is no virtue, because there's no prompting of the conscience. Without God, we're mired in the material, that flat world that tells us only what the senses perceive. Without God, there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure. If we ever forget that we're one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under."

"A young man whose father is a carpenter grows up working in his father's shop. He has no formal education. He owns no property of any kind. One day he puts down his tools and walks out of his father's shop. He starts preaching on street corners and in the nearby countryside. Walking from place to place preaching all the while even though he is in no way an ordained minister he never gets farther than an area perhaps 100 miles wide at the most. He does this for three years. Then he is arrested, tried and convicted. There is no court of appeal so he is executed at age 33 along with two common thieves. Those in charge of his execution roll dice to see who gets his clothing -- the only possessions he has. His family cannot afford a burial place so he is interred in a borrowed tomb. End of story? No, this uneducated, property less young man who preached on street corners for only three years who left no written word has for 2000 years had a greater effect on the entire world than all the rulers, kings and emperors, all the conquerors, the generals and admirals, all the scholars, scientists and philosophers who ever lived -- all put together. How do we explain that? ...Unless he really was what he said he was." Ronald Reagan

"[W]e've got to teach history based not on what's in fashion but what's important—why the Pilgrims came here, who Jimmy Doolittle was, and what those 30 seconds over Tokyo meant. You know...on the 40th anniversary of D-day, I read a letter from a young woman writing to her late father, who'd fought on Omaha Beach. Her name was Lisa Zanatta Henn, and she said, 'we will always remember, we will never forget what the boys of Normandy did.' Well, let's help her keep her word. If we forget what we did, we won't know who we are. I'm warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit. Let's start with some basics: more attention to American history and a greater emphasis on civic ritual. And let me offer lesson number one about America: All great change in America begins at the dinner table. So, tomorrow night in the kitchen I hope the talking begins. And children, if your parents haven't been teaching you what it means to be an American, let 'em know and nail 'em on it. That would be a very American thing to do." Ronald Reagan


Reagan's favorite verse was John 10:10 where Jesus said: The thief comes not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.



Please ponder this beautiful rendition of "America the Beautiful" by the Bill Gaither Vocal Band http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5JXWXhteJ30&feature=PlayList&p=178F8F6D24251662&index=0&playnext=1

Thank you so much to our wonderful co-hostesses, Charlotte and Ginger. Visit them at
http://bloggerspirit.blogspot.com/.

God bless you all, and please, God, bless America!


Mary










23 comments:

  1. Thank you for shareing this. God Bless America and each one that reads this today.

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  2. I really enjoyed this sweetie.

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  3. Amen. And Amen.
    Beautiful post.

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  4. I'm so glad you chose to share these thoughts with us today on Spiritual Sundays. Ronald Reagan was a great man and a great president. There is such wisdom in these words of his. As more and more of our liberties are being taken from us I hope America will wake up before it is too late.
    Blessings,
    Charlotte

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  5. Hi Mary, I thought this was a very beautiful and nice post, thanks so much for sharing this! Have a wonderful day!
    Hugs...
    Bobbi

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  6. America NEEDS God. Thank you. Happy SS day.

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  7. Oh Mary! How wonderful is this. God was truly speaking to you today. I really did not know Mr. Reagan was a religious man, and through his words I see, he truly was. He was ahead of the times, as he too could see what was coming. Thank you for sharing this SS with me, as I have so enjoyed it. Country Hugs and love, Sherry

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  8. Mary,
    How profound. My we all sit around the table tonight and remember what the carpenter's son did as also our American heritage. Thank you so much for the lovely post. Carol

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  9. Mary, I was a new mom in 1992, and like you, I heard those words, but I wasn't really HEARING them. Little did any of us know back then how significant and relevant they would be in the new century. I wept as I read his prayer that we would never lose our God-given optimism. Sadly, for many Americans, it has become a casualty of our times. Thankfully, it doesn't have to be, for the Author and Finisher of our faith is still in control. Thank you for sharing with us.

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  10. Hi Terry, I can't post a response to your comment as I can't find your blog, so I hope that somehow you will come back to my blog and read this. Thanks for your words. We MUST keep our joy in these times, and not let our enemy steal it. We DO know the outcome, and we know we've already won! God bless you, Terry!

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  11. Great post! I know that God has been dealing with many of us about praying for revival in our country. Prayer changes everything!

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  12. Wow, Mary this is a great post. I want to cheer for the other comments that got here before me. I agree! Ronald Reagan was a hero of mine. Charlotte and I had the opportunity to hear him speak in person once in Los Angeles. Charlotte also went to a meeting where his wife was the guest of honor. I love this speech and your words also.

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  13. Great post!
    So true, history forgotten repeats itself.

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  14. Hi Mary,
    I always liked President Reagan, although I am a Canadian. He was a great leader! I really enjoyed reading your post today and my prayer is that God would bless not only America, but Canada as well. Thank you for sharing and enjoy your Sunday.

    Blessings,
    Sandi

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  15. We need a prsident like him again! Thank-you so much for sharing this today!
    Ginger

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  16. I love and miss Pres. Reagan, a man of character and whose heart is truly after God. That's why he left an impressive record as the president. It was in his times, when the wall that divided Berlin collapsed. He is truly an encourager of God's love, building bridges, rather than walls.
    Happy Spiritual Sunday. Thank you for sharing with us those quotes from him. The more I learned about Reagan's heart. God bless.

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  17. We need to pray for another Reagan for 2012. Great post!

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  18. Thankyou for the wonderful post! President Reagan had a beautiful heart and now I know that it is because it was truly a heart after the Lord! Thankyou for sharing this and may we all remember to pray for our leaders and those that will lead us in the future!!!

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  19. Wow. What can I say, that the others above haven't done so already. Standing ovation!!!

    Hope you are enjoying a beautiful evening.

    Myra

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  20. Hello Mary.....I thought the world of Ronald Reagan.....thanks for printing his speech!
    ~Patti

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  21. Mary,

    I loved this post today. I too have captured a lot of what President Reagan said. He was a great man and a great president. The future generations could learn a lot from getting back to Biblical basics and then watch how God changes the country!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog today and wishing my hubby a Happy Birthday!

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

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