Wow, it's been a while! I have about 10 posts backed up in my brain that I'd like to write, but I simply can't blog all the time! Here's one that's been simmering for a while.
In light of Memorial Day, I have been thinking a lot about patriotism. I was born and raised in the South, love fireworks on the Fourth and know the Star Spangled Banner by heart. I get choked up when an American wins a gold medal at the Olympics or when a fallen soldier is honored with the playing of "taps."
I have a certain amount of pride in my country like most Americans do. However, I know very little about politics and I despise war of any kind really. The purpose of this post, however, is not to discuss politics or war. It's to discuss allegiance.
Every day of my school career, both before and after I attended college, started off by saying the pledge.
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
When I was a student at Milligan, a speaker came and shared at one of our chapel services a startling message about this practice. I couldn't even tell you his name (because I am terrible with details) but I remember the heart of his message. He shared that our allegiance should not be to our country but to God. He didn't believe in saying the pledge because his pledge and devotion was to God. Controversial, I know!
Then just recently, I was listening to a song by Derek Webb, the rebel of Christian music! Here are the words to his song, King and a Kingdom.
who's your brother, who's your sister
you just walked passed him
i think you missed her
as we're all migrating to the place where our father lives
'cause we married in to a family of immigrants
my first allegiance is not to a flag, a country, or a man
my first allegiance is not to democracy or blood
it's to a king & a kingdom
there are two great lies that i’ve heard:
“the day you eat of the fruit of that tree, you will not surely die”
and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class republican
and if you wanna be saved you have to learn to be like Him
but nothing unifies like a common enemy
and we’ve got one,
but he may be living in your house
he may be raising up your kids
he may be sleeping with your wife
oh no, he may not look like you think
Now, hear me when I say that I'm not against the pledge or our country. I am patriotic and I am thankful for the men that have given up so much for this country. But I do think there's a valid point in here. We are supposed to be Kingdom people. This country is great and I can't even begin to tell you how grateful I am to all the people that are much braver than I will ever be that have fought for my right to even write this blog. I am very aware of the sacrifice and the gravity of America's fight for freedom. But my first allegiance is to my King and to the Kingdom.
I will proudly say the pledge and wave the flag because I do pledge my allegiance to this country. I am blessed to be a part of it. However, it is my secondary pledge. My first devotion is to the Lord and I serve Him first.