"You have to work hard to offend Christians. By nature, Christians are the most forgiving, understanding, and thoughtful group of people I've ever dealt with. They never assume the worst. They appreciate the importance of having different perspectives. They're slow to anger, quick to forgive, and almost never make rash judgments or act in anything less than a spirit of total love . . . No, wait--I'm thinking of Labrador retrievers!" David Learn, 1998

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Invitation to make today a day of prayer and fasting

From Texas Governor Rick Perry, Longview, Texas:

     In 1977, I had left the Air Force and moved home.  I’ll be real honest with you—I was a bit lost spiritually, and I really didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life. So I moved in with my mother and father.  Now thatʼs a real trip!  I had been an aircraft commander, traveling all around the world, seeing amazing places that a boy from Paint Creek, Texas, had never even dreamed were out there before. I had this great epiphany during my mid twenties. As I had lived in Europe and South America and the Middle East, I saw all these different countries with different forms of government.  I was actually paying attention to the dictatorships, theocracies, monarchies, democratic states, etc.  I started making the connection between how those people lived and the form of government they had. It was most interesting for me, as Iʼd never really given that much attention to our form of government in America.  Iʼd taken for granted this extraordinary country we live in, but I came to realize that America is really a special place.  I also made the calculation that inside that really cool place was this incredible place called Texas !
     At twenty-five, twenty-six years old, it dawned on me what an incredible country we live in, and that the vast majority of the people take it for granted. They abuse the privilege of living in a free country. They don't realize how so many other people live around the world. But with that knowledge, I went home and lived with my mom and dad. I moved back into my old room. At eighteen years old, I left to go to my beloved Texas A&M University.  Nine years later, I came back into my old room. I swear to God, I know mother cleaned it, but it looked exactly like it did the day I left.  It had my football number on the door, and it had the all-star football game program still stuck on the bulletin board. It was an eerie moment for me to move back home.      
     My dad was pretty sure I was the same stupid eighteen-year-old that had left. I was pretty sure he hadnʼt gotten any smarter either. So we went through this really brutal period of time of finding our comfort zone. But God was dealing with me. At twenty-seven years old, I knew that Iʼd been called to the ministry. Iʼve just always been really stunned by how big a pulpit I was gonna have! I still am. I truly believe with all my heart that God has put me in this place at this time to do His will.
On Aug the 6th of this year, 2011, we are going to have a day of prayer and fasting. And itʼs going to be the real deal. Itʼs not going to be some program where we line up a dozen political figures to come in and talk. Itʼs going to be people standing on that stage, projecting and proclaiming Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior at Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas . Let me tell you, thatʼs a big stadium and there will be a lot of people. But itʼs going to send a powerful message across this country!  Our countryʼs broke. Well, actually, Washingtonʼs broke; our countryʼs going to be just fine. But weʼve got to have men and women who are willing to stand up to proclaim the values that this country was based upon.
     In 1774, at the Continental Congress when they got together and penned that first document, they talked about “life” and “liberty.”  Interestingly, the third thing they talked about was “property.” A couple of years later, when they actually wrote the Declaration, they changed that “property” to “the pursuit of happiness.” I just signed a piece of legislation today, the eminent domain legislation.  I tell people that “personal property” and the ownership of that personal property is crucial to our way of life.  Our founding fathers understood that it was a very important part of the pursuit of happiness. Being able to own things that are your own is one of the things that makes America unique. But I happen to think that itʼs in jeopardy.
     Itʼs in jeopardy because of taxes; itʼs in jeopardy because of regulation; itʼs in jeopardy because of a legal system thatʼs run amuck. And I think itʼs time for us to just hand it over to God and say, “God, Youʼre going to have to fix this.” (I think it was Herman Cain who stood up the other day and said, “Howʼs that 'Hope and Change' thing working out for you?”) I think itʼs time for us to use our wisdom and our influence and really put it in Godʼs hands. Thatʼs what Iʼm going to do, and I hope youʼll join me. I hope you’ll join us in Houston on the 6th day of August and really start a revival across this country.
     Hereʼs what I want to leave you with. I know from time to time, people will say something like, “There goes Perry. He wants to secede.” But I love this country. Weʼre a special place. We were created by God-fearing individuals who understood those biblical values and how powerful they could be and would be in the future. And I suggest that for our country, our best days are ahead if weʼll get on our knees and ask God to take over and give us wisdom. I may wear the Lord out every day in prayer. I pray for this country. I pray for restoration for this country. I pray for our president every day. I pray that God turns buckets of wisdom out on his head, that God will open his eyes. We can change this country, but it requires our giving it to Him and letting Him guide us.
"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes."

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