Featuring Branon Dempsey Posted on November 4, 2008
Election Day is here in America. A day of choosing. A time to serve our country in performing our reasonable act of service through voting. Election Day is also a time when we think of liberty, patriotism and sacrifice. We have all the icons to help remind us of our heritage. I tend to think of our country's flag, in what it represents and means.
Remember the term "Old Glory,"? This famous name was coined by Captain William Driver, a shipmaster of Salem, Massachusetts, in 1831. As he was leaving on one of his many voyages aboard the brig CHARLES DOGGETT - and this one would climax with the rescue of the mutineers of the BOUNTY - some friends presented him with a beautiful flag of twenty four stars. As the banner opened to the ocean breeze for the first time, he exclaimed "Old Glory!"
Through generations, words and phrases have different meanings to everyone. In the Church, we have a vocabulary that underscores what we acknowledge, believe and live. Even terms like "offering," have their own associations. One person may think of the time when the organ is played during the passing of the plate. Another may think of sacrifice, mercy and submission. I like to think of Paul's exhortation as he instructed us to offer our bodies to the Lord as living sacrifices (Romans 12:1). The clincher for me is found at the end of verse 1: "this is your spiritual act of worship." (NIV). My personal favorite is found in the NKJV, "which is your reasonable service." When is the last time you thought of your offering as a reasonable service, rather than a special-extra point?
Offering, sacrifice and obedience are three words that define our being and Christian heritage. As followers of Jesus, our reasonable service is to offer our daily lives to His will. We walk in His Spirit and choose the right ways of God to produce fruit. (Galatians 5:13-26). I am reminded of these truths even when I look at our own American flag. I see the red stripes of His offering and the white for His purity. The blue reminds me of His sacrifice and justice to save mankind. The stars help me remember that He is Maker and Creator of all life and the universe. In everything of who I am, He has made me to worship Him and to live as His sacrifice. Choose this day to offer yourself to His serivce on this election day and forever. (Joshua 24:15).