Summary: An Independence Day sermon. The cross is MY Statue of Liberty.
Intro: Independence Day - Video montage
Last year,(2013) almost 1 million citizens of other countries became American citizens.
This brings the total amount of naturalized American citizens to almost 50 million.
Comparing the latest figures of immigrants in different countries, the closest country to the USA boasts of less than 20 % of the number of naturalized citizens in AMERICA!
We are constantly made aware of the tremendous challenges this nation is presently facing on our southern border as each year, tens of thousands of unaccompanied children precariously cross into the LAND OF OPPORTUNITY and FREEDOM.
The USA was formed by IMMIGRANTS. That is the message that is broadcast 24/7/365 by our national ICON of FREEDOM sitting in NY harbor.
Personal illustration: 1966, after spending 5 years in Brazil, mom, dad and myself boarded a passenger ship in the port of SANTOS in south BRAZIL.
I remember as if yesterday the excitement that morning as the ship sailed into the NY HARBOR..
I remember that my first impression was disappointment…
I THOUGHT THAT IT WAS SO MUCH LARGER …
But with background clutter that includes the 100+story EMPIRE STATE …. in comparison, the Statue of Liberty looked so small.
Even though the statue was dwarfed by other structures in the busy harbor, the MESSAGE OF THAT ICON blares out the MESSAGE of FREEDOM that the entire world pays attention to.
Written on the base is part of this poem….
The Statue of Liberty
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips.
"Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"
In New York harbor stands a lady,with a torch raised to the sky.
And all who see her,
know she stands for liberty for you and I
I'm so proud to be called an American
To be named with the brave and the free
I will honor our flag and our trust in God,
and the Statue of Liberty.
IF you are like me, You love AMERICA!
For MOST who have lived for any period of time in another country (as a missionary kid and then as a missionary, a total of 30 years of my life were lived in Brazil)
A person who has lived extensively in another country knows HOW VERY SPECIAL AND UNIQUE AMERICA IS.
You may love AMERICA.
You may hate AMERICA.
HOWEVER, one thing is non-negotiable based on 238 years of AMERICAN HISTORY:
No other country in the world comes even into the ballpark of having offered more freedom and opportunities to the less fortunate than the good ‘ole USA.
No other country in the world has even come close to the RELIGIOUS FREEDOM guaranteed by the American constitution.