A prayer for Independence Day

July 4, 2014


In my sermon last week I mentioned the plight of a man named Josef, a Christian convert in Afghanistan whose story was recently featured in the New York Times. Josef is currently hiding from members of his own family, who have vowed to kill him because he abandoned Islam and gave his life to Jesus Christ. His worldly possessions consist of a well-worn Bible, a wooden cross with scripture from the Sermon on the Mount printed on it, and a folder containing records related to his conversion.

As I said in my sermon, even though Josef has next to nothing, he has so much more than many of us Americans! Josef is rich because his treasure is in heaven.

When I hear a story like his, I feel both inspired and guilty—guilty that I don’t wake up every morning thanking God for this amazing country in which we live, which ensures—sometimes at great cost—the freedom that we possess to worship our Lord.

With that in mind, I invite you to pray with me this prayer for Independence Day, which comes from the Book of Common Prayer of the Episcopal Church:

Lord God Almighty, in whose Name the founders of this country won liberty for themselves and for us, and lit the torch of freedom for nations then unborn: Grant that we and all the people of this land may have grace to maintain our liberties in righteousness and peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

2 Responses to “A prayer for Independence Day”

  1. bthomas Says:

    Thank you for this post. Most appropriate for this day.

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