“The Hour of Fading Freedom” by Pastor Amado Huizar.
We are seeing the slow fade and decline of Christian values in America. Biblical values are the core of the American family unit. The United States was founded by individuals escaping religious persecution and tyranny in Europe, and the founders of our nation used the Bible as a guide when seeking to establish the freedoms the colonists fought so hard to obtain.
The Constitution and the Bill of Rights guarantee the personal freedoms of each American citizen. The first freedom listed in the Bill of Rights is freedom of religion. The founders knew religion would be necessary to preserve morality in its citizens and government.
In recent times, it has become necessary for Christians to stand up to preserve righteousness, defend our right to worship, and protect our religious freedom. California, the state where I live and serve as a pastor, has seen its share of government attacks against family values, from city councils approving drag queens to read in public libraries to legislators passing bills that allow schools to teach children about gender fluidity and the practice of safe sex.
I personally spoke in opposition to these measures. I also was part of a team of church leaders who went to our state’s capitol to speak in opposition to a bill that would make it illegal to help someone turn away from a homosexual lifestyle. It would have classified conversion literature, including the Bible, as hate speech. After prayer and action, a meeting occurred with the bill’s author, and he agreed to amend the legislation. God gave us the victory.
With the COVID-19 pandemic, California’s governor tried to dictate whether churches were essential enough to have “in person” services. With suicide, domestic violence, and addiction on the rise, we stood up for our right to gather and worship. We fought all the way to the Supreme Court and prevailed. Our freedom to gather and worship was preserved.
The people of Israel were commanded to instill truth in the hearts of their children so their nation would be preserved (Deuteronomy 6:7). We must do the same with our children. Time has proven that the Bill of Rights alone can’t preserve religious freedom: we must be people of action who are willing to defend our liberties.
Religious freedom is important to the family unit. If we don’t protect it today, it will be gone tomorrow. Like an unprotected valuable under the heat of the sun, it will quickly fade. Godless politicians will strip our religious freedoms and worldly influencers will sway our children. We need to teach our children the Word of God and pass on the rich heritage we have been given.
Here are a few ways we can preserve our religious freedom:
1. Stay informed about local and state events, bills, and legislation. If you see something out of the ordinary, pray and share your concerns with like-minded citizens. Contact politicians with your concerns. Write letters, attend meetings, and have specific prayer.
2. Vote, and let your kids know you did. If your kids see you as an active citizen, they will take interest and follow in your footsteps. Share with them why you vote the way you vote. Vote on Biblical principles. We don’t vote for a party; we vote for a value.
3. Pray and read God’s Word together as a family. “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might … And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children” (Deuteronomy 6:4–5, 9).
Pastor Amado Huizar
Amado Huizar is the executive pastor of South Bay Pentecostal Church, located in Chula Vista, California. He is a frequent conference/camp speaker who has been blessed to have preached throughout this fellowship. He and his wife, Amber, are the parents of four children, Avery, Aiden, Austin, and Addison.
(Infomation from: UPCI Family Ministries – firstname.lastname@example.org)