“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.“
I’m grateful we still say this pledge before every school board meeting in my local school district. I serve on the board of directors and also as our treasurer. As I recited it this past Monday evening, something triggered a deeper reflection upon its words.
Is the United States of America a perfect country? Far from it. In fact, we have been imperfect since inception. And throughout our history, we’ve proven time and time again that we are flawed.
Yet, the fact we are “one nation under God” means we are one team. And as with any good, cohesive team, we have a foundation of trust in God. It’s in our DNA. Just look at the back of a $1 bill.
When foundational trust is established, then that means we can have healthy constructive discourse about important matters pertaining to liberty and justice for all. That doesn’t mean we always get it right. We are after all humans, and we’re far from perfect too.
Yet, I keep going back to the phrase “under God”. As long as we’re under God, then He will ensure good will result from all of the mess we create. He can use imperfect people, and our imperfect country, for the good. He has proven good works done with improper motives can still have a positive impact, as long as we are under Him. The only way that works is if we’re willing to acquire a posture of humility.
Humility, a human virtue, requires the willingness to be subordinate to Him. It’s a posture of soul and body and life that acknowledges and embraces the goodness of God and the humanness of self. To the extent our great republic is willing to recognize that, then we will not only survive, but thrive. When we are humble, we can focus on prioritizing our similarities over our differences. When we are humble, we can place the benefit of others over our own. When we are humble, we are aligned with the same foundation, under God.
I pray that each of us may receive the gift of humility so that this great country may continue to pursue liberty and justice for all. Healthy conflict is good conflict. It’s a requirement for the commitment, accountability and results of a cohesive team.
We are one team, one nation, under God.