Monday, July 4, 2011

Independence Day!

Yesterday in church we sang “America the Beautiful” for our opening hymn; I don’t think I’ve sung that fully since grade school. As you may have guessed, I have a few thoughts.
The first verse, we’ve all heard, I’m putting an asterisk at the beginning of the chorus: 
“Oh, beautiful for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain, for purple mountain majesties, above the fruited plain! *America! America! God shed his grace on thee, and crown thy good with brotherhood, from sea to shining sea.” 
The second verse is where it gets interesting:
“Oh beautiful for pilgrim feet, whose stern impassioned stress a thoroughfare of freedom beat across the wilderness!
*America! America! God mend thine every flaw, confirm thy soul in self control, thy liberty in law.” 
Do you see it? It’s almost a prayer! “God mend thine every flaw”
As if to say “We know we’re not perfect, but we implore God to make us better!” 
Ok, let’s go on:
“Oh beautiful for heroes proved in liberating strife, who more than self their country loved, and mercy more than life! *America! America! May God thy gold refine, till all success be nobleness, and every gain divine.”

There it is again, this time, a hope that God will refine us and make us the best we can be! 
Now the fourth verse:
“Oh beautiful for patriot dream that sees beyond the years, thine alabaster cities gleam, undimmed by human tears! *America! America! God shed his grace on thee, and crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.” 

The expectation of the future; we will grow and prosper in our freedom, and not even the grief we may experience will dim the light of our Republic. 
Now I’m fully aware that you may see these verses differently; that you may not have the same message that I got today; but the spirit bore witness to me today of the greatness of this country, of the Divinity of our Constitution and the exceptionalisim that is the United States of America, and I needed to share that with you. 
As a Latter-day Saint, I know that the Constitution of our Republic was inspired of God; that our Heavenly Father raised up wise men for the very purpose of forming this country.
Brigham Young said “The form of the government of the United States differs but little from that of the Kingdom of God.” (Thank you DoriAnn!)
When Isaiah prophesied about the Savior’s birth, and said the “government will be upon his shoulders”, most people look at that as meaning during the Millennial era; I think it means that, of course, but I believe it also means now, today. We have the document, a sacred document, to rule ourselves in a Godly fashion.  We need to take more time, more care in defending and preserving and restoring that sacred document. 
Let the words to the sacred patriotic hymns buoy you up, fill your soul with love for the Constitution and our Founding Fathers. They’ve left us a legacy that is hanging by a thread; let’s not let it break.


Audra M said...

Ohmygoodness! I love this! How has your book club gone? I really would like to get something going like that here but don't think I will find much interest.

Miss you!!!

mommyx12 said...

We sang that song too. I love that song. Your posts as usual are great. Hope things are going well with you.