Politics and pop culture seem to dominate public discourse in modern America; we are consumed with our sports teams, the newest song, or the latest Silicon Valley offering. Politics has become incredibly polarized and in a presidential election year ubiquitous, so every aspect of our lives is infused with politics – there is virtually no escape. Athletes, corporations, and entertainers incessantly preach their political views to us in every medium, so the obsession with politics saturates everything. Healthy national debates about various political issues can be beneficial, but it seems to create the appearance or assumption that all of our challenges and problems can be solved by politics.
Certainly citizens of ravaged cities like Chicago, Minneapolis, New York City, Portland, or Seattle must be wondering if a new mayor could rescue their communities. Citizens in wildfire devoured California or COVID19 plagued New York must be circumspect about their governors; while Floridians are probably very thankful for their governor. With the passing of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, many Americans are supremely concerned with the balance of the high Court and how it affects our lives. Along the same lines, many Americans are worried about control of the Senate which confirms judges, so they believe who they elect to the Senate is vital. And finally, almost every American is keenly in tune with who will be the next president rightly believing that person will absolutely shape the future of our nation. But can any of them save America?
The short answer is no. Politics is part of the democratic experiment and leaders and representatives are necessary for self-government, but just like all our rights come from God so do all our blessings. At every turn in our tumultuous history, Americans sought blessings from the Almighty Creator for success and prosperity. Starting with pilgrims at Plymouth Rock, they prayed and thanked God for their deliverance. Our founding fathers knew the incredible challenge they faced to produce a lasting framework that would preserve liberty for generations, so they prayed for divine providence. President Abraham Lincoln knew only God could save the union, so like the founders he called for national fasting and prayer. Americans saved the planet from global evil in two world wars not just by fighting, but by donning the full armor of God.
Not since the dawn of the Civil War has America been so divided and witnessed so much public turmoil and unrest. We can blame our political opponents, but in reality we are all culpable. Most Americans still believe in God, but as a country America has turned its back on God. We forced God out of our schools over half a century ago; atheist groups are steadily banishing the mere mention of God from the public square. They push the incredibly erroneous notion that men can govern and grow absent the blessings of our Creator. No house or nation can have peace or prosper without God.
It’s past time America and Americans turn back to God. We came close after the brutal attacks on 9/11. We came together as a country to pray for protection from our foreign enemies, but we neglected to face our own shortcomings. So while we survived the attacks, true awakening and genuine revival never materialized.
In all the angst Americans are suffering, we hunger for hope. Thankfully, a multi-denominational group of clergy have come together to shepherd Americans back to God; they have created a nationwide prayer rally called “The Return.” They are holding a national day of prayer Saturday 26 September in Washington, DC also to be simulcast around the world; you can find more information at thereturn.org. The key difference in this movement is calling on all Americans and the nation to repentance and then to sincerely seek salvation.
Beyond purging God from our schools, America has traded the sacred for the profane. We have allowed vulgar coarseness to overtake our culture. We have sexualized women and worse we have sexualized our children with stunning indifference; we have not only acquiesced to all manner of perversion – our pop culture endorses depravity in drugs and sex. We have put our humanity aside by not caring for our neighbors ourselves, but rather asking government to handle the least among us. We do not want to see the suffering; we shun the undesirable. And the worst stain of all, America as a nation has allowed the callous murder of over 60 million unborn babies.
How can God bless such wickedness?! America must repent as a nation and a people; and then we must submit to the Word of God, so we can accept His salvation. Surely, we need to vote for Godly leaders, but without an appeal to the Almighty and compliance with His commandments, there can be no healing, no redemption. The best days for America can still be ahead of us and we need to choose our leaders wisely, but it will not be a Senator or Supreme Court Justice or President to deliver us. Only God can bless America!
“Consecrate a fast; call a solemn assembly. Gather the elders and inhabitants of the land to the house of the Lord, your God, and cry out to the Lord. ‘Yet even now’ declares the Lord, ‘return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning; and rend your hearts and not your garments.’ Return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love; and he relents over disaster.” Joel 1:14, 2:12-13
Pete Riehm is the host of Common Sense Radio heard 8pm every Thursday on FMTalk106.5 or streaming at fmtalk1065.com. Email him at [email protected] or on Twitter @PeteRiehm or visit http://peteriehm.com.