We all have it. Most organisms do. DNA is that neat looking, twisting strand we studied in science class and now we see spinning on computers on popular CSI television shows. DNA traces life. It shares information that unlocks secrets to the mysteries of life. It is what connects families, tribes and generations. It is part of what makes our family trees.
America’s DNA strand reaches back to our forefathers, back to the men and women who so diligently fought for our freedoms. Back to the people who never backed down from tyranny; the people who made it possible for all of us to choose to believe in God or to not believe, freely. Our DNA has strands of fearlessness, bravery, and devotion to ideas for rights and freedom, and God.
You can no more remove the strand of God in our country’s DNA than you can remove an obnoxious relative from your family tree. God is a part of our country, its history and its soul. People believing that it is even possible to remove God from our country’s DNA, especially with no reaction from citizens when they try, is beyond me. Liberal commentators were so surprised when the DNC tried to remove God from the platform and then had backlash.
I understand that not everyone in “the family” is going to believe the same things. If, however, we are realistic about family, all of our ‘personal’ families started with a “familial” spiritual belief, of some sort. It may or may not have included God, but you had some belief shared with you growing up in your family.
As time passes, people come to their own ideas and understandings of what they believe.
Sometimes these beliefs are well grounded in a painstaking study of various ideas and belief systems, which result in us “finding ourselves”. Other time’s we disagree so vehemently with someone that we take the “I’ll show you” approach to our beliefs and ideas and find ourselves in places we never thought we would with our beliefs. Ultimately committing to those beliefs for a lifetime or for only a season, until we think we have made our point.
Whatever all of us believe individually, you cannot dismiss or deny: America was founded on God. Our forefathers knew that fact and openly acknowledged it. The Declaration of Independence states it by saying; people “are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”.
“Their Creator”, it says. You can’t get more specific than that for acknowledging God.
Newt Gingrich wrote the book, Rediscovering God in America. It’s a walking tour of Washington D.C. and our historic landmarks. Its purpose is to show the references to God throughout our Nation’s history. In the introduction of this book, you immediately see how deeply beloved God was in the lives of our Forefathers.
One example was Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural speech. Mr. Gingrich relates that in Mr. Lincoln’s 732-word speech, the President made “14 references to God and included two Bible verses”. The introduction goes on to explain how President George Washington, at his first inauguration in 1789 “put his right hand on the Bible… [after taking the oath] adding ‘So help me God’”. (Rediscovering God in America, pages 14 -15)
God’s been in America since the beginning, so why kick Him out now? America is a family filled with those born into it and with those adopted into it. We are a beautiful tapestry of cultures and ideas, talents and beliefs. As with all families, we have a heritage; a point from which we began.
True, all families evolve. Even if their core beliefs remain the same, the depth, understanding and commitment deepen or lessen over the life of the family. Sometimes the later members of the family change their ideas and beliefs, but they cannot and should not deny where they came from originally. There are some members of our national family who are trying desperately to get all of us to forget where we started. The American idea began from the point where we were tired of a government telling us what to believe, and now we are slipping back into that bondage.
Our nation’s history is based on fighting for the ability to be free. We lose precious lives in our military fighting for other countries to have the freedom to speak of God in public and to have their say in what happens in their country, yet we are creating an elitist society at home now, where we let “intellectuals” tell us God is silly, and we are stupid to follow or acknowledge His sovereignty openly and in our country’s family history.
As Americans, we all come from the same family tree, whether you like your “relatives” or not. Instead of trying to knock each other out of the tree, accept that some people in the family love, appreciate and believe in our God-inspired religious roots, and we want to offer that same opportunity to future generations.
Family gatherings will be so much more pleasant.