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Roger Helle / May 26, 2021

Where Do I Even Begin?

How about with a tale about the beginning of our great nation.

It’s been almost two years since I first began to write for The Patriot Post. Knowing Mark Alexander and a few of the staff for years, I’ve been impressed and blessed by the many contributors I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. They cover current events with incredible insight and knowledge. Sometimes it’s hard to know what to write that they haven’t already written about extremely well.

So, when I say “where do I begin,” I want to go back to the beginning. Not “The Beginning” like creation, but the beginning of America as an independent nation.

History once taught us the Hand of God was upon our nation and our leaders. George Washington implored the grace and mercy of God to take his army through the perils of fighting the greatest military power in the world. The picture of General Washington on his knees, beside his horse, praying at Valley Forge was not someone’s “idea,” but the testimony of a Quaker, Isaac Potts, who witnessed Washington in prayer.

After victory and Washington’s return to private life, his country called on him again to chair the Constitutional Convention. The bickering and fighting amongst the delegates from the various colonies was so bitter, it almost ended the new nation before it began. Washington’s dignity and bearing kept the convention on track — mostly! There came a point when debating broke down as each colony’s delegates wanted their own agenda. Gone was the unity and bond that held them together through years of hardship.

During the Great Awakening, evangelist George Whitfield constantly challenged his friend, Ben Franklin, to surrender his life to Christ. Franklin declined, courteously. Now, at 81, Franklin knew something was needed to keep the efforts together. He rose to his feet and spoke to the delegates.

“In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine Protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered. All of us who were engaged in the struggle must have observed frequent instances of a superintending Providence in our favor. … And have we now forgotten this powerful friend? Or do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?

"I have lived, Sir, a long time, and the longer I live, the more convincing proofs I see of this truth: ‘that God governs in the affairs of man.’ And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? We have been assured, Sir, in the Sacred Writings that except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it. I firmly believe this. I also believe that, without His concurring aid, we shall succeed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel; we shall be divided by our little, partial local interests; our projects will be cofounded; and we ourselves shall become a byword down to future ages. And what is worse, mankind may hereafter, from this unfortunate instance, despair of establishing government by human wisdom and leave it to chance, war, or conquest.”

Franklin concluded, “I therefore beg leave to move that, henceforth, prayers imploring the assistance of Heaven and its blessing on our deliberation be held in this assembly every morning before we proceed to business.”

As a result of Franklin’s challenge, order was restored and a Constitution and a Bill of Rights resulted.

The call to Heaven today is no less needed than it was over 200 years ago.

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