Today was the 98th anniversary of Ronald Wilson Reagan’s birthday. Looking at his life, it becomes clear the kind of impact that can be made by a person prepared for their hour. He was was not afraid to speak the truth and then pursue the coarse it set him on. He spoke with conviction and authority. Principles were his guides, not polls.
Where are the men and women like that today? Consider these quotes:
“If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on Earth. And this idea that government is beholden to the people, that it has no other source of power except to sovereign people, is still the newest and most unique idea in all the long history of man’s relation to man. This is the issue of this election. Whether we believe in our capacity for self-government or whether we abandon the American revolution and confess that a little intellectual elite in a far-distant capital can plan our lives for us better than we can plan them ourselves.”
On another occasion:
“So, we’ve got to teach history based not on what’s in fashion, but what’s important: why the Pilgrims came here, who Jimmy Doolittle was, and what those thirty seconds over Tokyo meant. … . If we forget what we did, we won’t know who we are. I’m warning of an eradication of the American memory that could result, ultimately, in an erosion of the American spirit. Let’s start with some basics: more attention to American history and a greater emphasis on civic ritual. And let me offer lesson number one about America: All great change in America begins at the dinner table. So, tomorrow night in the kitchen I hope the talking begins. And children, if your parents haven’t been teaching you what it means to be an American, let ’em know and nail ’em on it. That would be a very American thing to do.“
~ Reagan Farewell Address 1989
His speeches rang with simple yet tough truth that offered hope and optimism. He was not afraid to warn of real dangers that could end our way of life. He labored to bring the principles and spirit of our country’s founders to the current generation.
The Scriptures teach us to pass on the memory of our history and God’s providential guidance.
“Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set.” ~Proverbs 22:28
“And ye shall observe this thing for an ordinance to thee and to thy sons forever.
And it shall come to pass, when ye be come to the land which the LORD will give you, according as he hath promised, that ye shall keep this service. And it shall come to pass, when your children shall say unto you, What meanye by this service? That ye shall say, It is the sacrifice of the LORD’s passover, who passed over the houses of the children of Israel in Egypt, when he smote the Egyptians, and delivered our houses. And the people bowed the head and worshiped. ” ~ Exodus 12:27-27
Today, Christians are afraid or ashamed to own their history. There seems to be few who are willing to speak out against those that are stealing the biblical foundation of our national identity.
We go about our lives and are careless to give God the glory for His bountiful goodness towards us. We are too busy plowing our fields and not thanking God for anything, much less everything. (Proverbs 21.4 ; Matthew 24:37-39)
President Reagan warned of letting history be edited for fashion, to make it politically correct. We must remember again who we are,where we came from, and why we are here. We dare not forget our past or our children will never possess their birthright.
It is not only some mere political agenda of which I speak. We are to be about our Father’s business. If we would seek to further His interests in our daily lives, the national scene would take care of itself. We must not weary in contending for the truth.
The Bible issued the warning to guard one’s heritage long ago. If we lose here, then our children’s generation will not escape. They will move to eternity unprepared.
Every generation has had to contend for a godly identity. Some have received revival, some have survived with a mere remnant of true believers.
Let us not be counted among the slack and unconcerned that sit upon the stools of do nothings counting our round tuits. Instead lay hold on the things of God. If we honor him it will be our honor to pass on a godly heritage.