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Value your gift of freedom

February 4, 2008

by Rev. Mike Nelson, Triune Lutheran Parish – North Crow River, Grace, Redeemer

Voters in many states, including Minnesota, prepare to go to the polls or hold precinct caucuses this Tuesday as the first step in choosing our next president. I think it is an appropriate time to share the following prayer by Martin Luther:

“Dear Lord God, guide the hearts of our leaders to your praise and glory, and to the welfare of the land. Enlighten all who are in authority and move them to do what is right.

“Preserve your people, your judgment, your righteousness, and all administration of justice in this nation and throughout the world. Then, good order will prevail.

“May peace in the world not be troubled by rebellion and treason. May proper discipline and respect not be disregarded or violated by unfaithfulness and other evil. Amen.”

Luther lived before the time of democratic elections and constitutional guarantees of freedom of expression. Still, Luther saw the need for government leadership that is guided by principals of justice and righteousness. When people are governed with justice and righteousness, good order is a natural result and everyone benefits, Luther reasoned.

Being blessed by the constitutional guarantees that we have in the United States, all citizens are entitled to exercise their rights to participate in their government.

All major parties will hold precinct caucuses in Minnesota Tuesday, Feb. 5 as the start of the process of choosing candidates for office. I urge all of you to attend the local caucus of whichever party you prefer. Express your views of how your government should be run and who should be our candidates.

We have been blessed with the freedom to choose our leaders. By using our constitutional rights to support whichever candidates we think will bring us the best and most just government, we are being good stewards of a precious gift, the gift of freedom.

I urge all of you to use this gift God has given you by attending a caucus Tuesday.