One of my absolute favorite past times is cuddling with Joshua…my 5 year-old GBb. Whether we are watching a movie or just talking, he garners my full attention. So on New Year’s Day when he climbed up on the couch, fireplace in the background, to watch “Bowl Games” with me, I was thrilled! As I surfed to find the most entertaining match-up, we came across the NHL Winter Classic. Joshua insisted that we stop there and bag the other games. He was fascinated by this unfamiliar scene. The NHL Winter Classic is an annual outdoor game that pays homage to the origin of ice hockey. This year’s event was held in Philadelphia. Snow on the ground near the venue, spectators dressed appropriately to brave the elements and flags waving in the wind. A picture-perfect setting to again capture my GBb’s attention. He wanted to know about all the different flags. Why were there more than the American flag? Seemingly on cue after I explained that hockey is a very international sport, played in all the countries of the flags represented, the national anthems were sung. First “Oh Canada” and then our own “Stars Spangled Banner”. As Patty LaBelle belted out those words my heart began to race, tears welled in my eyes and I stood and joined in singing “…And the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air, gave proof through the night, that our Flag was still there…”
Sitting there with my absolute favorite GRANDson (I only have one), my love for this nation was re-ignited. Who knew that searching for Bowl Games would cause me to reflect on the blessing of being born in the United States of America? In today’s visceral climate leading up to the presidential election, it felt good just to be thankful that I was born in this country. Amidst all the trouble and turmoil, I have chosen to be grateful that the God who created the universe chose that l be born here! And because I know that HE is infallible, I know that my place of birth is a part of HIS divine plan for my life!
And so I’ll pray and practice “being quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry” because the scripture goes on to say “Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.” Js.19-20 NLT
After all I could have been born in…say…N.Korea. Who knows what my prayers would have looked like then? Something to consider…