God Bless America?

A week after 9/11 I wrote an article for a writing class.  My self-proclaimed “pagan” instructor did not like my article; it dripped in blood-red ink.  It wasn’t my writing he disliked; it was the subject.

In the aftermath of that horrible attack on America, “God Bless America” signs were everywhere.  You couldn’t turn on the television without hearing someone shouting it.  Every politician that spoke ended their speeches with the interjection.  And I couldn’t help but think, “Why should He bless America?”

The United States keeps moving further and further away from God.  Why should He move closer and closer to us?  Why should He open His benevolent hand to us when we’ve turned our backs on Him?  We’ve cast God out of our government, out of the classroom, out of the public square, but let us be rocked by fear and we cry out to Him to save us.

This was the topic of my article that so repulsed my instructor.  He did, however, begrudgingly give me a good score on the poem I had attached.  As you read this poem, ask yourself the question as well: Why should God bless America?

God Bless America?*

“God bless America!”

            Aloud in the streets we cry.

God bless America?

            I have to wonder, why?

 We’ve cast God out of every place

            By politic’s poison pen,

And torn down from every wall

            Commandments One through Ten.

 From school to work to court

            His Name has been repressed.

Even among His churches

            He’s an oft unwanted guest.

 But now in terror we turn

            And hope to see His face.

God bless America?

            T’would be an act of grace!

And yet God’s grace is sufficient: sufficient to forgive, sufficient to heal, sufficient to bless our country.  And He promises to do it IF we — if His people, the CHURCH —  will turn to Him and remember Him again.  As He promised so long ago,

…if my people,

who are called by my name,

will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways,

then will I

hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

2 Chronicles 7:14

 * ©Donna Lewis September 2001