Memorial Day is soon to be here. A time to honor our War dead, to be thankful for the Liberties and Rights, and to be generally thankful to God for all His attendant Blessings on America.
But this year, 2017, is unlike most recent years.
America has been in a slow, almost unnoticeable state of decline for 104 years. This decline has met with some, often very little, resistance. Examples of times America tried to return back to God and Constitutional Governance are seen in Calvin Coolidge, to a lesser extent under Eisenhower; and again America awoke and tried to reverse their course under Ronald Reagan, the 1994 Congress, to a lesser extent with George W. Bush, and America’s most recent attempt was the 2010 elections. And, no, the 2016 election of a lying, arrogant, unrepentant, New York Liberal, Donald Trump, didn’t slow it nor change it for the better one bit.
But in each effort the spiritual and religious aspect wanes, grows weaker, as if man could himself effect the positive change needed.
Now we’re in the darkest days America has seen since the Civil War or The American Revolution. WHAT did those people DO that turned and kept America on the Right Course?
They PRAYED. They sought God earnestly for guidance and strength to enable them to DO what GOD wanted them to DO.
We’re familiar with II Chronicles 7:14…but let’s look at II Chronicles 7:14-22.
First let’s look at:
II Chronicles 7:14-18
“IF MY PEOPLE, WHICH ARE CALLED BY MY NAME, shall HUMBLE THEMSELVES, and PRAY, and Seek MY Face, AND turn FROM their wicked ways;
THEN will I HEAR from Heaven, and FORGIE THEIR SIN, and HEAL THEIR LAND…mine eyes shall be OPEN, and my ears ATTENT unto the prayer that is made…IF THOU wilt walk before me as David thy father walked, and DO ACCORDING TO ALL that I have COMMANDED thee, AND shalt observe my statutes AND my judgments; THEN will I estblish thee…”
We like that. Especially how it ends.
What follows below are examples from America’s founding onward that show what THEY did- and what WE NEED TO DO…if we want to restore America.
John Hancock (1737-1793), an American merchant and Revolutionary leader, was the president of the Provincial Congress of Massachusetts. He became well known for having been the first member of the Continental Congress to sign the Declaration of Independence.
On April 15, 1775, the Provincial Congress of Massachusetts declared A Day of Public Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer, signed by the President of the Provincial Congress, John Hancock:
—The First National Call to a Day Of Prayer and Fasting.
In circumstances dark as these, it becomes us, as Men and Christians, to reflect that, whilst every prudent Measure should be taken to ward off the impending Judgements …. All confidence must be withheld from the Means we use; and reposed only on that GOD who rules in the Armies of Heaven, and without whose Blessing the best human Counsels are but Foolishness – and all created Power Vanity;
It is the Happiness of his Church that, when the Powers of Earth and Hell combine against it… that the Throne of Grace is of the easiest access – and its Appeal thither is graciously invited by the Father of Mercies, who has assured it, that when his Children ask Bread he will not give them a Stone ….
RESOLVED, That it be, and hereby is recommended to the good People of this Colony of all Denominations, that THURSDAY the Eleventh Day of May next be set apart as a Day of Public Humiliation, Fasting and Prayer … to confess the sins … to implore the Forgiveness of all our Transgression … and a blessing on he Husbandry, Manufactures, and other lawful Employments of this People; and especially that the union of the American Colonies in Defense of their Rights (for hitherto we desire to thank Almighty GOD) may be preserved and confirmed …. And that AMERICA man soon behold a gracious Interposition of Heaven.
“By Order of the [Massachusetts] Provincial Congress, John Hancock, President.”
On November 8, 1783, Governor John Hancock, from Boston, Massachusetts, issued A Proclamation for a Day of Thanksgiving to celebrate the victorious conclusion of the Revolutionary War:
�John Hancock, Esquire
�Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
HEADQUARTERS GRAND ARMY OF THE REPUBLIC
General Orders No.11, WASHINGTON, D.C., May 5, 1868
- The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit.We are organized, comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, “of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors, and marines who united to suppress the late rebellion.” What can aid more to assure this result than cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead, who made their breasts a barricade between our country and its foes? Their soldier lives were the reveille of freedom to a race in chains, and their deaths the tattoo of rebellious tyranny in arms. We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let no wanton foot tread rudely on such hallowed grounds. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no vandalism of avarice or neglect, no ravages of time testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.If other eyes grow dull, other hands slack, and other hearts cold in the solemn trust, ours shall keep it well as long as the light and warmth of life remain to us.
Let us, then, at the time appointed gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with the choicest flowers of spring-time; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved from hishonor; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon a nation’s gratitude, the soldier’s and sailor’s widow and orphan.
- It is the purpose of the Commander-in-Chief to inaugurate this observance with the hope that it will be kept up from year to year, while a survivor of the war remains to honor the memory of his departed comrades. He earnestly desires the public press to lend its friendly aid in bringing to the notice of comrades in all parts of the country in time for simultaneous compliance therewith.
- Department commanders will use efforts to make this order effective.By order ofJOHN A. LOGAN,
WM. T. COLLINS, A.A.G.
Memorial Day Prayer From a U.S.Chaplain.
By Rev. Dick Kozelka (ret)
First Congregational Church of Minnesota
Creator of years, of centuries,
Lord of whatever is beyond time,
Maker of all species and master of all history —
How shall we speak to you
from our smallness and inconsequence?
Except that you have called us to worship you
in spirit and in truth;
You have dignified us with loves and loyalties;
You have lifted us up with your lovingkindnesses.
Therefore we are bold to come before you without groveling
[though we sometimes feel that low]
and without fear
[though we are often anxious].
We sing with spirit and pray with courage
because you have dignified us;
You have redeemed us from the aimlessness
of things’ going meaninglessly well.
God, lift the hearts of those
for whom this holiday is not just diversion,
but painful memory and continued deprivation.
Bless those whose dear ones have died
needlessly, wastefully [as it seems]
in accident or misadventure.
We remember with compassion those who have died
serving their countries
in the futility of combat.
There is none of us but must come to bereavement and separation,
when all the answers we are offered
fail the question death asks of each of us.
We believe that you will provide for us
as others have been provided with the fulfillment of
“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
Although this originated as America’s 1st Nationally Recognised Thanksgiving Proclamation, it is fitting to include it here as well:
Saturday, November 1, 1777
Forasmuch as it is the indispensable duty of all men to adore the superintending providence of Almighty God; to acknowledge with gratitude their obligation to him for benefits received, and to implore such farther blessings as they stand in need of; and it having pleased him in his abundant mercy not only to continue to us the innumerable bounties of his common providence, but also smile upon us in the prosecution of a just and necessary war, for the defense and establishment of our unalienable rights and liberties; particularly in that he hath been pleased in so great a measure to prosper the means used for the support of our troops and to crown our arms with most signal success:
It is therefore recommended to the legislative or executive powers of these United States, to set apart Thursday, the 18th day of December next, for solemn thanksgiving and praise; that with one heart and one voice the good people may express the grateful feelings of their hearts, and consecrate themselves to the service of their divine benefactor; and that together with their sincere acknowledgments and offerings, they may join the penitent confession of their manifold sins, whereby they had forfeited every favor, and their humble and earnest supplication that it may please God, through the merits of Jesus Christ, mercifully to forgive and blot them out of remembrance; that it may please him graciously to afford his blessings on the governments of these states respectively, and prosper the public council of the whole; to inspire our commanders both by land and sea, and all under them, with that wisdom and fortitude which may render them fit instruments, under the providence of Almighty God, to secure for these United States the greatest of all blessings, independence and peace; that it may please him to prosper the trade and manufactures of the people and the labor of the husbandman, that our land may yield its increase; to take schools and seminaries of education, so necessary for cultivating the principles of true liberty, virtue and piety, under his nurturing hand, and to prosper the means of religion for the promotion and enlargement of that kingdom which consisteth in righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.
And it is further recommended, that servile labor, and such recreation as, though at other times innocent, may be unbecoming the purpose of this appointment, be omitted on so solemn an occasion.
Now let’s look at II Chronicles 7:19-22.
“BUT IF YE turn away, and forsake my statutes and my commandments, which I set before you, and shall go and serve other gods, and worship them; THEN WILL I PLUCK YOU UP BY THE ROOTS OUT OF MY LAND WHICH I HAVE GIVEN THEE…I will cast [you] out of my sight…so that they [others] will say, WHY hath The Lord done THIS unto THIS Land? And it SHALL be answered, Because they FORSOOK THE LORD GOD OF THEIR FATHERS…AND LAID HOLD ON OTHER GODS, AND WORSHIPPED THEM, AND SERVED THEM; THEREFORE HATH HE [GOD] BROUGHT ALL THIS EVIL UPON THEM.“
2017 is a critical year. We do not have the “luxury” of waiting til the 2018 elections to then begin to pray and do as we ought.
May I implore all of us to set aside ONE hour a day to pray and seek God for America. As we pray let us each let The Lord God search us, do some soul searching, maybe fast between now and Memorial Day. And ON Memorial Day let us meet locally all across America to pray and honor those who paid the price for our Liberties and Rights…and pray that America returns to God, returns to WHAT made America GOOD.
Because when we/America return to WHAT made America GOOD then America will be Great again.
My Memorial Day Prayer?
Lord, Father God, I humbly come and submit myself to you. In mercy forgive and pardon me.
By Thy grace help me to BE the servant , the patriot, the salt & light in my community that I need to be.
Lord, be merciful unto America.
Remember Thy people in You tender-merices.
Father, I pray that we will return unto You and lovingly follow You in ALL our ways.
Father God, I pray that you restore America.
Help US to WORK to restore America. May our face and our faith be ever toward and IN You, and IN You ALONE.
May we not trust in our own abilities, for apart from Your mercy and grace we and all our efforts are nothing.
May we pray as never before. And THEN DO as never before.
In the Name of Thy Beloved, only Begotten Son, the Lord Jesus I pray.
Below is The FIRST Prayer in The United States Congress!!
Jacob Duché’s First Prayer in Congress”[September 7, 1774](1) O! Lord, our heavenly father,(2) King of Kings and Lord of lords: who dost from thy throne behold all the dwellers upon earth and reignest with power supreme & uncontrouled(3) over all kingdoms, empires and governments, look down in mercy,(4) we beseech thee, upon these our(5) American states who have fled to thee from the rod of the oppressor and thrown themselves upon thy gracious protection, desiring henceforth to be(6) dependent only on thee. To thee they have appealed for the righteousness of their Cause; to Thee do they look up,(7) for that countenance & support which Thou alone canst give. Take them, therefore, Heavenly Father, under thy nurturing care: give them wisdom in council, valour in the field. Defeat the malicious designs of our cruel adversaries. Convince them of the unrighteousness of their cause. And if they persist(8) in their sanguinary purposes, O! let the voice of thy(9) unerring justice sounding in their hearts constrain them to drop the weapons of war from their enerved(10) hands in the day of battle. Be thou present, O God of Wisdom and direct the counsels(11) of this honourable Assembly. Enable them to settle things upon the best and surest foundation, that the scene of blood may be speedily closed; that(12) harmony and peace may effectually be restored, and truth and justice, religion and piety prevail and flourish amongst thy people. Preserve the health of their bodies and the vigour of their minds; shower down upon them and the millions they represent(13) such temporal blessings as Thou seest expedient for them in this world, and crown them with everlasting glory in the world to come. All this we ask in the name and through the merits of Jesus Christ thy son, Our Saviour, Amen.
Thomas Jefferson said the following, it is a warning for us today:
And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the gift of God? That they are not to be violated but with his wrath?
Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep for ever: that considering numbers, nature and natural means only, a revolution of the wheel of fortune, an exchange of situation, is among possible events: that it may become probable by supernatural interference! The Almighty has no attribute which can take side with us in such a contest.–But it is impossible to be temperate and to pursue this subject through the various considerations of policy, of morals, of history natural and civil. We must be contented to hope they will force their way into every one’s mind. I think a change already perceptible, since the origin of the present revolution. The spirit of the master is abating, that of the slave rising from the dust, his condition mollifying, the way I hope preparing, under the auspices of heaven, for a total emancipation, and that this is disposed, in the order of events, to be with the consent of the masters, rather than by their extirpation.
May we pray and work to throw off tyranny and slavery today as out forefathers did.
GOD SAVE AMERICA.
-Rev. Larry Wallenmeyer.