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God Shed His Grace On Thee

Free To Explore Forgotten Thoughts

Five miles out of Townsend is an events center built by a local family to accommodate bigger get togethers in the community.

On this morning the Lieutenant Governor of Montana is the guest speaker, the event: The Mayors Prayer Breakfast.

Ranchers, farmers, business folks and people like us showed up to pray for families, governments, civic life, the youth and the health of the community.

As we listened to the sheriff and others speak about the power of prayer in their own lives I felt a spiritual chord connecting me to this place.

In my days as a journalist in Oregon I attended many similar events. But there it felt like you had to watch your words, not talk too much about God and temper your spiritual thoughts to be more inclusive to the community at large.

A few days after the Thurston High School shooting there was a prayer event at the high school. I was asked to speak and did. I did not hold back on my thoughts of what God would do and remember being ridiculed by the other media, specifically the Rolling Stone Magazine, for my honesty.

Sitting in the audience in Townsend I thought how watered down we’ve allowed our lives to become over the fear of offending someone. Jesus offended many, not trying to, but truth is offensive.

I wake to a hidden message on one of my social media page from a guy I blocked for being a jerk. He is threatening to put out a fake message to the world saying I’m a sexual predator if I don’t succumb to his challenge to see who can outlast the other in tazzing.

This is the world we live in and a great number of us are just done with the intimidation.

We can no longer hide from our beliefs and thoughts or soften our resolve as not to offend the person on either side of us.

I thank God for cultures over-reacting to the drama of events over the last couple of years.

What was meant to control and conceal has strengthened our resolve and exposed the need to stand up.

Back at the prayer breakfast we sing “America The Beautiful”. I look around at hard working Americans living their lives for each other, for their families but most of all for their God and tear up.

“America, America God shed his grace on thee and crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.”

Later that day, on a bike ride up in the mountains I see those purple mountains majesty and know I am home.

We accidentally rod on private property. The rancher started talking with us and showed us a dirt road on his property we could take to make our ride even better. As we rode off he said “it was nice to meet you two” and you could tell he meant it.

In my head the last verse of the song rang true:

“oh beautiful for men of faith, who founded this great land. Proclaimed for us, in God we trust and held to God’s strong hand.

America, America God shed his grace on the. Till lives confess, His righteousness from sea to shining sea.”

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I still have faith and hope for our nation. Because....God. And only God. I believe we have lots and lots of repenting to do, and lots and lots of prayer and hard work. But when He sees true repentance and true desire for us to place Him back at the center of what this nation was founded upon, things can and will turn around. Those of us who say we believe in and on Him and His Word are being shown that the rubber meets the road...are we gonna try to ride on flats? Or are we gonna put air in these tires and get back where we belong?


You are so right about how careful one must be expressing themselves living in Oregon. Specifically, the southern Willamette Valley. Even more specifically, the Eugene area! How ironic it is mostly those who champion the freedom of speech of those they agree with, who can't stand it when those they don't agree with exercise their freedom of speech. Good job not being bullied, Rick!


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