America Essay Contest: A Leader and Innovator, Land of the Free and Home of the Brave

America Essay Contest: A Leader and Innovator, Land of the Free and Home of the Brave
A CrossFit Event For Veteran Heroes in New York City on May 22, 2014. (Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images)
Sarah Herrick

Just hearing the question “Why do I love America?” leads me to ask how can we not love this country? America is a city on a hill, a bright light for the rest of the world.

Many have forgotten this truth and far too many have never been taught it in the first place, because to see it, we must know and understand our own history. We must know and understand the effects and influence America has had for good around the world.

If America is as terrible as so many now claim, why do more people immigrate here than to the entire rest of the world, combined? If America is so terrible, why are people refusing to leave? And why have so many given their very lives to form this country and defend this country?

I love America because we can clearly see the providence of God in the creation of this great nation and in our founding documents. We can’t look at our own history without seeing that she is a miracle.

Consider how many battles against the British, and their allies, were won, or ambushes avoided, because of a convenient storm or other weather anomaly, at just the right time to save our freedom fighters by allowing them to safely retreat, or to give them some type of advantage towards victory. With so many perfectly timed, yet highly unlikely miracles weaved throughout our history and founding, how can we not see God’s hand in the creation of our nation?

The truest miracle of America though, might be George Washington himself. As one of America’s greatest (if not the greatest) heroes, George Washington miraculously survived his years of military service (and many close calls) to become our first president.

He was so revered by the men who had faithfully served under him and followed him into battle that they wanted to overthrow Congress and make him their ruler. But Washington adamantly rebuked the very idea and talked them down with a tremendous and humble appeal for freedom. For a man in his position to turn down such power and opportunity for something greater than himself, can only be described as the providence of almighty God.

America never should have worked, nor survived, but not only has she survived, she has thrived. And I believe that it is because we’ve had things so good, for so long, that we have forgotten that freedom isn’t free, and that we will have to fight to keep it.

When we take the time to understand our own history in America, we cannot deny the incredible and miraculous events that transpired to make this country what it is. Leader and innovator, land of the free and home of the brave. We must understand our origins to save America from those that wish to tear her down and seize her tremendous wealth and power for themselves.

There are those who say America was never great and that she cannot move past her sins, mainly the sin of slavery. Those who say such things though must ignore all the good, and ignore the history of humanity as well, to believe such a thing. For the reality is, slavery was a norm of human history. All nations and peoples have slavery in their past but America is the only nation who fought a civil war to end it.

As a nation founded on Judeo-Christian principles, America’s founding fathers consulted the Bible while writing our founding documents. They realized that slavery was evil, and that dehumanizing others because of their race or skin color was a violation of our own creed and of God’s will. And let us not forget that the blood of those who fought to end slavery is soaked into our country’s very soil.

The historical ignorance and willful blindness by many to the truths of our founding is stunning. As citizens of this great nation, we have a duty to acknowledge and understand the sacrifices made to right our wrongs and to understand how far we have come as a united people.

I implore everyone to read “If You Can Keep It” by Eric Metaxas. It is an outstanding book that would profit every American citizen and should be taught in all schools. Metaxas tells the story of our incredible history and many of the heroes that God used to form the United States of America. We are also reminded of Os Guinness’s “golden triangle of freedom,” whereby we learn freedom won’t work without a virtuous people of faith, who are willing to fight and sacrifice, to preserve and conserve something greater than themselves.

I love America because she is a gift and a blessing, not just to every citizen, but to the world. America is special and I hope and pray we turn back to God and remember our true origins. For we will only have our singularly unique republic, if we can keep it.

Sarah Herrick, 43, lives in Sacramento, California, where she runs her own small pet sitting and dog training business.
This essay was entered in the Epoch Times “Why I Love America” contest.
Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.
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