I usually feel a surge of patriotism on July 4th, but this year I went over the top. First thing that morning, while I drank coffee, I rode the Potomac Eagle Excursion Train through the breathtakingly beautiful mountains of Virginia, visually of course — just a DVD, but I really got into it. We live in a beautiful nation!
Then I remembered an incident I cherish, an incident in America’s history. It happened in July of 1776, when the First Continental Congress met to vote on whether or not to adopt a document Thomas Jefferson had written. That document was the Declaration of Independence.
The majority of the delegates decided they wanted to honor the God of the Bible and add words to the document expressing America’s dependence upon Him. The vote was taken. The majority voted to add several phrases and this was one of them: “they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights.” (America’s Providential History, Mark Beliles, p. 149)
Gung-ho for human rights, those delegates couldn’t know that in several hundred years, a Texas senator would stand on the floor of the Texas Legislature and filibuster to deny unborn babies their right to draw their first breath, and countless Americans would praise her.
American has fallen. So, on this 4th of July, I didn’t glory in present day America. I just couldn’t. Instead I gloried in the God-honoring, human rights seeking, First Continental Congress of 1776. Those Americans, I respect.