About Me

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My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Patriotism

One of the things I like about my church is the different people, places and cultures represented there. We have people from England, Germany, Cuba, Mexico, the Philippines, and Africa that attend our church. They are not the majority, but they are there. Some came here legally, others did not. Some came over as "boat people" seeking a better way of life. Others married someone from the U.S. It's cool to see so many different parts of the world represented in one place. And it's cool that that place is the church.

Yesterday I met with two ladies from our church. We were a strange group. One was in her 20's, the other in her 30's and I am in my 40's. One was from England, one from the Philippines, and I am an American. Talk about cross-cultural and cross-generational! We talked about a lot of things, shared some struggles, shared ideas, talked about our kids, and we talked about American patriotism.

American patriotism bugs me sometimes. I have the utmost respect for the men and women who bravely serve our country whether in our military or as First Responders (fire, police). They are true heroes - every day - whether they are in the line of fire or not. They put their lives on the line, literally, to keep the rest of us safe. Thanks and gratitude to these courageous men and women can never be expressed enough.

But sometimes, if we're honest, our patriotism becomes something other than healthy pride in our country.

I believe that patriotism can get in the way of God. I've seen it do so in subtle and not so subtle ways.

I've had people tell me that they can support the Pine Ridge mission projects because they are "here in America" and we should take care of our own first. That's a patriotic statement, but God does not make that distinction. He loves all people the same whether they are American or not and if we are following Him, we will not make a distinction either.

Last Christmas our choir did a Christmas program with a patriotic twist. That is fine, but I noticed something that disturbed me. As they were waving old glory and singing "I'm Proud to be an American" and "God Bless America", people rose to their feet. They cried. They waved the little plastic flags that had been handed out proir to the service. They were obviously proud citizens of America. But later when they sang "The King is Coming" and other spiritual songs, people looked bored. It was not that the talent was lacking - the same people sang those songs. But no one was standing then. I didn't see any crosses waving. They didn't look moved at all.

It made me wonder where our allegiance really lies. As followers of Christ, we are citizens of the Kingdom of God first and foremost.

Donald Miller wrote something in his book Searching For God Knows What that struck me as very, very true.

"I get the feeling sometimes that after thew world ends, and when God destroys all our buildings and our flags, we will wish we had seen everybody as equal, that we had eaten dinner with prostitutes, held them in our arms, opened up the spare room for them and loved them and learned from them."

1 comment:

David Cho said...

How did Christianity and patriotism become synonymous in the country? Is it mainly because of the founding fathers commitment to religious freedom?

I agree with you, and it is sad. Jesus never taught patriotism, and in fact he rubbed the Jews the wrong way by hanging out with Gentiles and frequently praised them.