You See, bin Laden, There is
a Right Way
By Bob Slosser
Watching a PBS rerun of the Day of Prayer Service
at the Washington Cathedral, I was struck by a revelation, hopefully
inspired: Its people are the glory of America. And not believing
that God (He is the only source of Glory actually) is offended,
I say, "Glory to God." And I say, "Thank you for grace." Furthermore,
I unashamedly say, "Hallelujah."
You remember that on the starry night of Jesus birth, a
great company of the heavenly host drew close to earth and said
(I prefer "sang"):
Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace to men on
whom his favor rests.
Luke 2:14, NIV
And as the wags like to add, "Praise God that Hes not finished
with me yet."
The American people, as shown at that service, are so much more
than a great bunch of folks. They are men and women, Native Americans,
African-Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian-Americans, Arab-Americans,
and White Americans. Some are tall (very tall), some are short
(very short), some are fat (ver. . . never mind), and some are
thin (one or two), even skinny. A lot are in military uniform.
A few are expensively dressed and adorned. Most are clad ordinarily.
Some are pretty, some are not all are beautiful. Dark hair,
blond hair, no hair. Softly smiling, sober-faced, frowning. Glorious.
The parallel isnt exact, but theyre the way the founding
fathers hoped as they argued, quarreled, shouted, and fought,
and hammered out a Declaration of Independence and a Constitution
in Philadelphia in the mid-1770s. John Adams reported to
his wife that "this assembly is like no other that ever existed
(just like America)."
"Every man in it is a great man an orator, a critic, a
statesman, and therefore every man upon every question must show
his oratory, his criticism, and his political abilities (just
like America). "The consequence of this is that business is drawn
and spun out to immeasurable length (just like America). "I believe
if it was moved and seconded that we should come to a resolution
that three and two make five, we should be entertained with logic
and rhetoric, law, history, politics, and mathematics concerning
the subject for two whole days, and then we should pass the resolution
unanimously in the afternoon...(that man knew the America for
which he fought and was prepared to die).
Things havent changed much, although the issues in the
19th, 20th, and 21st centuries
have exceeded that of three and five civil rights, equal
opportunity, prohibition, isolationism, immigration, justice for
all, missile defense, social security, decency -- and sometimes
they take years and decades to resolve, maybe a century. But this
wild and wooly nation does finally resolve the hardest issues
a country has resolved, and progress results. I saw and heard
it on TV Sunday afternoon. Yes, I muttered to myself, we havent
resolved everything, and we havent even grappled with everything,
but we will. Indeed, we will defeat terrorism with the world or
We will talk, and we will shout, and we will literally fight,
and we will riot we may even burn cities but the
issue will stay on the table, and one day we "will pass the resolution
in the afternoon." Thats the way a democratic republic seems
to function. Guys with short tempers like me must learn to wait
and to talk and to grow until that "afternoon." What is required,
beloved, is that we should strive with all our might and Gods
grace to avoid "fighting words."
You see, good people, thats what that mysterious word "providence"
means in all our textbooks. Not everything is easy, but all things
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