I’ve got the joy joy joy joy down in my heart.

On the news today was about how this small town in North Carolina was forced to take down a sculpture of a praying soldier. Things like this have been happening forever. It always weighed on my heart. I used to get upset because people said things like: “they’re trying to take Jesus out of the country.” What I instantly realized today when I read the news article is: they can’t. It was one of the most basic concepts I learned growing up in church. You are in our hearts. They taught it to us as kids and I think we just forgot somehow. I’m not saying we should give up without a fight and I’m not saying we should throw every penny we ever made into the fight to save a statue. What I mean is they can take away the monuments. They can take the statues. They can have the sculptures and the figures. They can remove plagues. They can have every single material thing we have, but they will never be able to take You from us. You’re called Emmanuel, which means God with us, for a reason. Maybe they want the reminders taken away because deep down they know the truth.

1 Peter 1:8 says “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory,”

Romans 8:38-39 says “And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow–not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below–indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
So, that is my prayer today. I pray for that small town in North Carolina. I pray for healing for anyone affected by the sculpture. I pray for those that were offended. I pray they learn to see and feel your love. I pray for those that fought for the sculpture. I pray they keep fighting for your glory. I pray that they remember that you will always be with them. I pray that you put your hand on them and give them comfort. I pray that I never take for granted the freedom I have in this country. I pray that I remember the joy you’ve given me and that I share it with the world. I pray that I remember that nothing can separate us. I pray that I fight with your love rather than for your love because I will always have your love. I pray that I remember that your love is something that cannot be taken from me. I pray that I fight with your love in every single moment of my day. I pray that I share your love with everyone I meet. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.