My parents are both buried in Houston at the National Cemetery. I discovered today that the cemetery director has banned the words “God,” and “Jesus” during funeral services or any other gatherings at the cemetery. The director has also demanded that pastor’s submit their prayers for approval and has turned the chapel into a meeting room. The director seems to be taking the heat for this decision, but she doesn’t have the authority to make such decisions. Actually, it is illegal no matter who dreamed it up. I am disappointed that the Federal representatives of Texas have not assured us that there has been some mistake.
Our federal government is making rules that prevent us from worshiping Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Reminds me of the story about Daniel and the Lions Den. In brief, an order signed by the king made it unlawful for Daniel to worship his God for 30 days. Instead, during this time period, only the king could be praised and worshiped.
I’ve not discovered what the penalty for verbally worshiping God/Jesus at the Houston National Cemetery is. I doubt that offenders will be thrown in a pit with hungry lions, which was what happened to Daniel.
I find Daniel’s response to the king’s rule interesting. He just kept praising his God like he had been doing all of his life. In fact, his prayer was to give thanks to God.
“Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went home. And in his upper room, with his windows open toward Jerusalem, he knelt down on his knees three times that day, and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as was his custom since early days.” Daniel 6:10
Daniel had no recourse–the law was basically set in stone. Even the king who had signed this mandate was sorry that he had let himself be tricked by devious men who wanted Daniel killed. The king prayed and fasted all night in hopes that Daniel’s God would save him.
Was Daniel saved? YES!!!
Did Daniel openly defy the order because he was confident that God would save him?
Nothing in the Bible supports this idea. In fact, previously, Daniel’s three friends were placed in a comparable position. They were to worship a golden idol or be thrown into a fiery pit.They refused and the king personally confronted them–giving them another chance–making it clear the punishment for not bowing down to the idol.The king even asked what god they thought might deliver them from his (the king’s) hands. My prayer is that if my path puts me in a similar circumstance that God squelches my flesh nature’s desire to survive so that my spirit nature would proudly give the same answer.
16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter.
17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king.
18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
Daniel, Shadrach, Mesach, and Abed-Nego did not beg God for their lives. They did not try to bargain with God—-God, If you will save me, then I will —-.
Instead, Daniel, Shadrach, Mesach, and Abed-Nego served, worshiped, praised, and thanked God.
FYI: Daniel, Shadrach, Mesach, and Abed-Nego were thrown into a fiery pit, but were not even scorched.
Back to the Present
At this time, we do not have a king. There are legal actions that can be taken to protect our freedom to worship.
As an individual, there are legal options.
Know that my first thought was to go to the cemetery with a portable microphone and amplifier and loudly express my displeasure. Maybe take a group of people with musical instruments so that we could sing songs about God and Jesus. Would this be illegal? Sad to say–YES!
My daughter, who is more informed about such issue than I am suggested I check out Liberty Institutes’ website. I did and found it very informative about the Houston cemetery issue as well as other things I’d been concerned about. This website makes it easy for me to contact my state and federal representatives.
As a child of God, I can pray. This idea is listed last so that you are left with the most important plan of action.
I also want to include a dialog between king Solomon and the LORD. This was when the temple was being dedicated to the LORD.
12 Then the LORD appeared to Solomon by night, and said to him: “I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for Myself as a house of sacrifice.
13 When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people,
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.
15 Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to prayer made in this place.
16For now I have chosen and sanctified this house, that My name may be there forever; and My eyes and My heart will be there perpetually.
17 As for you, if you walk before Me as your father David walked, and do according to all that I have commanded you, and if you keep My statutes and My judgments,
18 then I will establish the throne of your kingdom, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man as ruler in Israel.’
19 “But if you turn away and forsake My statutes and My commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods, and worship them,
20 then I will uproot them from My land which I have given them; and this house which I have sanctified for My name I will cast out of My sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples.
21 “And as for this house, which is exalted, everyone who passes by it will be astonished and say, ‘Why has the LORD done thus to this land and this house?’
22 Then they will answer, ‘Because they forsook the LORD God of their fathers, who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and embraced other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore He has brought all this calamity on them.’”
The national news proudly showed Obama, the president of the United States, praying with Muslims inside the white house. This same president has announced to foreign countries that the United States is not a Christian nation. Instead, it embraces and supports all religions.
If so, why are Christians being denied the freedom to pray? I will ask my representatives for an answer to this question.
The bottom line is that the past, present, and future of America is in God’s hands. I am thankful any and all religious freedoms I have and pray for opportunities to share God’s Word with others.
Let me add that I give you my opinion–never accept it or the opinion of others without testing it God’s Word.