Privilege – a special right, advantage, or immunity granted or available only to a particular person or group.
In America today, the word privilege carries a significant emotional charge. It is used and misused to drive wedges between Americans who might otherwise be shoulder to shoulder in their pursuit of their American Dream.
My gut reaction when I was accused of privilege is, ‘Who are you kidding? Do you know how poor my family was when I was growing up? Do you know how hard my mom and dad worked to put food on our table? Do you know how looked down on we were for being ‘country hicks’? And you call me privileged? Right.’
I’ve now spent quite some time thinking, reflecting, examining my life and I’ve come to the conclusion – I was and am privileged.
Having a father and mother who loved, encouraged, and supported me was a privilege.
And they demanded – and received – my respect.
Having a large family who all proudly worked hard at their jobs was a privilege.
And I learned how much I loved the freedom of working and earning my own money.
Having wonderful teachers who showed me a bigger world than I knew was a privilege.
And none of those teachers tried to brain wash me into any political party’s way of thinking.
Having a church that taught me to love my neighbors was a privilege.
And the teaching was very clear – all God’s children are my neighbors.
Having neighbors of every flavor known to man was a privilege.
And in our small town – everyone was our neighbor and we all worked to get along.
Having a town that loved and served the United States of America was a privilege.
Nearly every home had a U.S. military veteran with stories of service – some heroic.
And that love for our country lives in me today.
So, indeed, I was and am privileged. Were others less privileged? I’m sure of it. Were others more privileged? I sincerely doubt it.
If we as a nation are to provide real privilege to our citizens we must stop the more than fifty (50) year delusion that trillions of dollars will even the playing field. It has not. It will not. Strong families will. Hard work will. Excellent teachers will. Putting God back into focus will. Loving and respecting each other will. Honoring brave service will.
I don’t find anything on that list that I would trust to big government. Big government has more than five (5) decades of failure and trillions of hard-earned tax dollars flushed down the drain to convince me that politicians have neither the will nor the skill.
So how do we bring these (admittedly) ‘small-town’ values to a nation of 330 million people?
I’m not sure. I have some ideas. I’m sure you have some ideas.
I pray and ask you to pray for God to bring to us every idea we need to bring America back from the edge. Back to a land of privilege – for us all.
Please allow us to serve you and those you love.
P.S. If we’re going to get some really big answers to our really big problems – do you think we’re going to need to pray some really big, bold, audacious prayers?
I do. Maybe what we all need is some training classes on big, bold, audacious prayers. Just saying . . .