Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Greatest Need of our Nation

While doing some research for my next article in Think magazine, I ran across some material that I wish I could get into the hands of every responsible person in America. Patrick Fagan, a research fellow for the Heritage Foundation wrote a brilliant paper on the value of religion to America's well-being. He concludes:

A steady growing body of evidence from the social sciences demonstrates that regular religious practice benefits individuals, families, and communities, and thus the nation as a whole. The practice of religion improves health, academic achievement, and economic well-being and fosters self-control, self-esteem, empathy, and compassion.

Religious belief and practice can address many of the nation's most pressing social problems, some of which have reached serious levels (e.g., out-of-wedlock births and family dissolution). Research has linked the practice of religion to reductions in the incidence of divorce, crime, delinquency, drug and alcohol addiction, out-of-wedlock births [now at 4 of every ten, PDS], health problems, anxiety, and prejudice. Faith-based outreach has been uniquely effective in drug addiction rehabilitation and societal re-entry programs for prisoners. Furthermore, the effects of religious belief and practice are intergenerational and cumulative. In a sense, they compound the interest of our social capital.

The greatest need in our nation is simply a return to God and his Word. We must quit making it politically and socially correct to tell God to shut up and leave us alone. The answer to America's self-destruction is and has always been God. If I could get to the highest hill and could shout to America, I would tell them to come home to God. I would point them to the church! I would urge them to repent! I would tell them that God's Word and ways has the answer to their heart-aches. Jesus still gives rest to the soul...

I would urge every reader to take the time to read Fagan's paper. You can find it at:

http://www.heritage.org/research/religion/bg1992.cfm

Forgive the shameless plug, but I also hope you'll go to http://www.focuspress.org and subscribe to this remarkable magazine. Some of the dearest people I know work there, and they are trying to make a difference in our world. The magazine is celebrating its first anniversary in January and has already shown itself to be a success.

May God bless America again, and He will if America will allow Him into their lives.

Phil

1 comment:

Terry said...

While teaching through the book of Revelation, I noticed the danger of a society and a government becoming violently anti-Christ and anti-Christian. I don't believe that we are close to that point yet, but it never goes well in such societies and governments ultimately. We need to keep letting everyone know about Jesus Christ, while making every effort to show them God's kindness (even when it involves sacrifice and suffering on our part). Thanks, Phil, for your efforts in doing it.