This Sunday is July 4. Some of you are planning to talk about freedom and you're tempted to say that freedom comes from our troops, or our government, or our founding fathers, or our ideals, or democracy, or the stars and stripes.
Please don't. While these are claims that this country has made and is founded upon, they are not the claims of Scripture. Please talk about true freedom. Freedom that comes from the Cross of Christ. Please talk about how where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom. Please talk about how it is for freedom that Christ set us free. Please talk about how those whom the Son sets free are free indeed.
You're going to be tempted to make it about independence day.
Please don't. Our fierce desire for independence got us into this sin mess in the first place. Talk instead about making our declaration of dependence. Talk about the need for grace. Invite the people to confess and repent and to align their lives in dependence and desperation to the one true and living God.
You'll be tempted to pray for troops. Do that. Acknowledge their bravery and courage to stand for something and risk their lives for something and ask that God would give us virtues like that as Christians. But in the same breath you pray for the troops, pray for the Iraqi and Afghani troops as well, because Jesus tells us to.
Take a stand this Sunday...don't simply appease the people, but preach the gospel.