I hope the title got your attention. That was the intent. I know those who follow politics are aware of Republicans in Name Only or RINOs as they are less than affectionately called. This is not that but it IS related, sort of. They both end the same way – In Name Only.
I just finished reading If You Can Keep It, the latest book by Eric Metaxas. One of the central thoughts put forth in this book is the fact if we, as Americans, do not wake up and take control of our government and our country we are on track to becoming America in Name Only. I agree with his assessment. We have been heading down this path for many years now. Where we are headed is further and further away from the principles that founded this country and made America unique and the country all others want to immigrate to. Too many of us already here have taken our freedoms and responsibilities for granted for too long.
This is not a partisan book or blog post. It talks about America and that includes all of us who are blessed to live here. My purpose in sharing my review and thoughts here is a hope it would motivate some of you to rekindle your love for America and its heritage and share that love and heritage with others.
One of the points the author makes is loving America does not mean ignoring where we have made mistakes. We should acknowledge the mistakes, learn from them but not dwell on them. Recently the focus has been on emphasizing the bad at the expense of any mention or acknowledgment of the good. That lack of balance has led us to where we are today and is caused in part by the fact many of the stories, such as those shared in this book, are no longer taught in school or passed down from one generation to the next. This book was written as an attempt to help restore that balance.
Think of it like a friend or family member. You love them. They are not perfect. They have made mistakes, and will continue. However we love them and are proud of them in spite of the mistakes and faults. America is not treated with the same respect. All we hear in the news and from many leaders is what America has done wrong, in their opinion, or what is wrong with America. We need to shift that balance back to remember and pass down what is great about America. We need to rekindle our pride in America and being Americans.
Some highlights for me
I can really only scratch the surface here and what stood out to me might be different than what stands out to you. That is why I encourage you to get your own copy of If You Can Keep It, The Forgotten Promise of American Liberty today and evaluate the thoughts inside for yourself.
If you do you will be reminded the responsibility for keeping our government in check and functioning as it should resides with “We The People.” The government we have is the government we deserve. So if you are not happy with how the government is “working” it is your responsibility as one of “We The People” to change it. If we the people do not take our responsibilities to “keep it” seriously the America we once knew will soon cease to exist.
You may or may not have heard this before. I was taught this in Civics class in high school but I am not sure it is still being taught today.
The author supports his case very well with stories from our country’s history, some you probably have heard but some you probably haven’t. One of those is the story of Cincinnatus and his similarities to George Washington. This was one I had not heard before. You will learn about William Wilberforce, George Whitefield, John and Charles Wesley and the beginning of the Methodist movement, and The Miracle of Squanto too. You will also learn why Abraham Lincoln thought America was the “almost chosen people” and why he “felt that America had been called by God to fulfill a role and to perform a duty for the rest of the world.”
A few more quotes from the book
“In 1776, a nation was formed in a way that a nation had never been formed. It was something entirely new: the nation as idea…and the idea in which they believed was, in a word, liberty…So what is the secret of our success? You might simply call it the idea of American liberty, which might also simply be called self-government.”
Alexis de Tocqueville said, “Liberty cannot be established without morality, nor without faith.”
Os Guinness built on this when he described what is known as the Golden Triangle of Freedom which says, “Freedom requires virtue; virtue requires faith; faith requires freedom. If any one of the three legs of the triangle is removed, the whole structure ceases to exist.”
Are you up for a challenge?
This book will teach, remind, inspire and challenge you. If you don’t want to learn, be reminded, inspired or be challenged this book is not for you. If you do enjoy history and do want to be inspired and challenged get your copy of If You Can Keep It today and rekindle your love for America and then pass it on!
Until next time…
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Originally posted on Peculiar Perspective on 06/14/2016