The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more. (Excerpt from a letter John Adams wrote to his wife, Abigail).
While John Adams misjudged the day, he got the sentiment right. We all love our country of birth, but do we celebrate its birthday with solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty, as he hoped?
The Bible tells us how in 2 Chronicles 20:
- Jehoshaphathis attention to seek the Lord; and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah.
- He praised God and admitted their weakness.
- God reminds them it wasn’t theirs to fight but his.
- Jehoshaphat says “We don’t know what to do but our eyes are on you.
- God answered them with these words. “Don’t be afraid, take your position, stand still, it is my battle. I’ll deliver you.”
- They went out early in the day, trusting God. God won the battle and his people praised Him and gave Him thanks for doing that.
What will we do on our countries’ birthday? Will it just be hotdogs and fireworks? Or will we make time for God and beg for his mercies?
Prayer: Lord, we owe our very existence to you. Help us to remember that and act on it. In Jesus’ name. Amen.