Memorial Day 2023: Honoring All Those Now Gone Who Made The Cause Of America Their Supreme Choice
Calvin Coolidge Memorial Day Address 1923: The Destiny Of America
Following are the last three paragraphs of President Coolidge’s 1923 Memorial Day Address titled The Destiny Of America. In this speech, Coolidge recaps our core American values and celebrates the peace the U.S. was enjoying (World War I had ended in 1918.) The President reminds his audience that the country’s decisions, harmony, and spirit alike come from the people. And 100 years later, PAGA adds, “and government at all levels composed of righteous and just people.” Our Memorial Day 2023 prayer is loosely based on this portion of The Destiny of America address.
The Destiny Of America, Memorial Day 1923
Our country does not want war, it wants peace. It has not decreed this memorial season as an honor to war, with its terrible waste and attendant train of suffering and hardship which reaches onward into the years of peace. Yet war is not the worst of evils, and these days have been set apart to do honor to all those, now gone, who made the cause of America their supreme choice. Some fell with the word of Patrick Henry, “Give me liberty, or give me death,” almost ringing in their ears. Some heard that word across the intervening generations and were still obedient to its call. It is to the spirit of those men, exhibited in all our wars, to the spirit that places the devotion to freedom and truth above the devotion to life, that the nation pays its ever enduring mark of reverence and respect.
It is not that principle that leads to conflict but to tranquility. It is not that principle which is the cause of war but the only foundation for an enduring peace. There can be no peace with the forces of evil. Peace comes only through the establishment of the supremacy of the forces of good. That way lies only through sacrifice. It was that the people of our country might live in a knowledge of the truth that these, our countrymen, are dead. “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
This spirit is not dead, it is the most vital thing in America. It did not flow from any act of government. It is the spirit of the people themselves. It justifies faith in them and faith in their institutions. Remembering all that it has accomplished from the day of the Puritan and Cavalier to the day of the last, least immigrant, who lives by it no less than they, who shall dare to doubt it, who shall dare to challenge it, who shall venture to rouse it into action? Those who have scoffed at it from the day of the Stuarts and the Bourbons to the day of the Hapsburgs and the Hohenzollerns have seen it rise and prevail over them. Calm, peaceful, puissant [powerful; mighty; strong; vigorous; forcible] it remains, conscious of its authority, “slow to anger, plenteous in mercy,” seeking not to injure but to serve, the safeguard of the republic, still the guarantee of a broader freedom, the supreme moral power of the world. It is in that spirit that we place our trust. It is to that spirit again, with this returning year, we solemnly pledge the devotion of all that we have and are.
Almighty and Sovereign Lord of all Nations,
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before Him” (Ephesians 1:3-4).
“Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people whom He has chosen as His heritage!” (Psalm 33:12). The United States was founded by Your people and to this day is occupied by millions of Your children, both Christians and Jews. Bless us, Your heritage, according to the covenant made with Abraham, “in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 12:3). And fulfilled in the Lord Jesus Christ, “if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise” (Galatians 3:29).
On this Memorial Day, as we remember and honor the fallen, we also remember and express our gratitude to You for the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of You, Nature’s God, our Creator God, has entitled us. Thank You for the freedom and liberty that we have enjoyed throughout our history thus far.
Father, in these times of deep corruption and government tyranny, we thank You for our history. For leaders who, perhaps didn’t understand why at the time, but were led to speak, discuss, and write about core American values. Our values based upon righteousness, justice, freedom, individual rights, and a government deriving its just power from the consent of the governed.
Oh Sovereign Lord. Thinking about our founding values, certainly Christ renders the same indictment to us as to the church at Ephesus, “Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent” (Revelation 2:5).
We thank You for the Memorial Day Address given by Calvin Coolidge in 1923 called “The Destiny of America.” As we celebrate this Memorial Day, we thank You for President Coolidge’s reminder about this sacred day, “It has not decreed this memorial season as an honor to war, with its terrible waste and attendant train of suffering and hardship which reaches onward into the years of peace. … these days have been set apart to do honor to all those, now gone, who made the cause of America their supreme choice.”
Father, as our Supreme Choice, our First Cause, Your Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven, induces this “cause of America” of which Coolidge speaks. Because of Your higher thoughts and ways, we have a national home offering liberty, freedom of speech, freedom to worship, to live peaceably, to be treated justly, to own property, to elect leaders, i.e. the American dream, which is as close to a Divine dream as has ever been reached on earth. Only because the American founding rested on Your principles of moral and civil law have we been bequeathed such a remarkable life of freedom.
Today as we celebrate Memorial Day and honor the fallen, those who have died for the sake of freedom, we thank You for many things, though we name only a few.
We thank You that those who have given their lives for this country do not have to see what the Communist-obama led Democrat Marxists have done to this nation and our military forces. We thank You they didn’t see the Nazi red speech, especially those who died at the hands of Hitler. We thank You that they will never be victims of this politicized and weaponized executive branch under an illegitimate regime. We find strength knowing they would never surrender to such atrocities.
Lord, Memorial Day today brings with it even greater grief and mourning than ever before. I think of all the men and women who have given their lives for this country, the 18-year olds sent to Vietnam with no American interest to defend, those who never had children, never had fathers, never had the opportunity to grow old; those killed in Iraq based on outright lies of American government intelligence and Americans’ bloodlust of war for gain; and so many other places of war where American treasure should not have been. And next year, will we be celebrating any of those who are in foreign countries today, under the guise of “American military” enriching defense contractors, laundering money for the puppet and others, building LGBTQ centers, coordinating drag queen shows, and leading people straight to hell? Oh Lord, how far we have fallen!
Once a veteran said, “We signed up to serve our country, and we carried out the mission we were given.” Almighty Lord, why can’t the so-called leaders of our nation have such integrity? How long will You allow them to continue to destroy lives without being brought to heel?
Nonetheless, we thank You for the integrity of our fallen. We thank You for their service and sacrifice. How Christlike are our honored dead! As Jesus said, “This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:12-13).
May we find in our own souls such integrity and love. Jesus, help us. Help us to return to our first love. I am utterly ashamed of this puppet president and his woke and corrupt cabinet. How long, Father, will you let this charade continue? This charade that is destroying what You have given us. I confess on behalf of the nation, we did not guard and watch over the community and the fiery, serpentine Democrats broke out among us, poisoning the nation. Judge the Demons! The very loud, obnoxious demons, the party of slavery, segregation aka elitism, drugs, child trafficking, injustice, deception, fraud, corruption, lies, dependence, crime, the party whose only agenda is to steal, kill, and destroy, just like their father. Purge the evil from among us! For we are Your people! You are our God. You have been our Guide through all these years.
This century old Memorial Day address reminds us, “…if we believe that Providence has been the guide, our own success, our own salvation require that we should act and serve in harmony and obedience.” Yet later, it says, “there can be no peace with the forces of evil.” The forces of evil have permeated our government and the institutions of government at every level, and have gone to war against their fellow citizens, most of all the citizens who worship You and belong to Christ.
Evil has shown its full hand in the United States. We owe that revelation to You, Father God. For most Americans do right and obey the laws of the land. They “take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that the [evil Democrat Marxists] do in secret. But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible” (Ephesians 5:11-13). In our being good citizens, You have worked for us, and exposed the great darkness in the U.S. government.
Rightly, wisdom proclaims of You:
He uncovers the deeps out of darkness and brings deep darkness to light.
23 He makes nations great, and he destroys them; he enlarges nations, and leads them away.
24 He takes away understanding from the chiefs of the people of the earth and makes them wander in a trackless waste.
25 They grope in the dark without light, and he makes them stagger like a drunken man.
Job 12:22-25 ESV
Lord, we pray in the Name of Jesus Christ that You will make America great again. Don’t destroy us yet. Give us another chance. Send deliverance from this evil regime. Make manifest without delay the time when, in addition to the puppet, we see all the regime stagger like a drunken man, falling into their own pits, entangled in their own nets, caught in their own lies, exposed for their darkness, and locked away for crimes against humanity, crimes to overthrow the government, crimes against a Holy God and those made in His image.
Coolidge points out, “peace comes only through the establishment of the supremacy of the forces of good.” God, You are good. Your people are good because Your Spirit dwells within them. Help us to establish the forces of good. Grant these forces strength, courage, and might to conquer the forces of evil in our nation. And always a fidelity to truth. “It was that the people of our country might live in a knowledge of the truth that these, our countrymen, are dead. ‘Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.’”
Praise You Most Holy God that “this spirit is not dead, it is the most vital thing in America. It did not flow from any act of government. It is the spirit of the people themselves.” This resolve is grace given to Your children. “We [seek] not to injure but to serve, the safeguard of the republic, still the guarantee of a broader freedom, the supreme moral power of the world. It is in that spirit that we place our trust. It is to that spirit again, with this returning year, we solemnly pledge the devotion of all that we have and are.” And this spirit has been given us, You have empowered us since, “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs– heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with Him in order that we may also be glorified with him” (Romans 8:16-17).
How can we show our gratitude? You have endowed Your people with power, love, honor, and dignity. You have given us the quintessential example of sacrifice for the greater good in the gift of Jesus Christ Who died for all people.
We don’t worship government; we don’t worship this nation. But we are thankful for our great nation and for the freedoms it has given us, and for the exemplar of a Christian Commonwealth that it has been to people of other nations. We are thankful for the freedom of conscience and the morality of love of neighbor, things that normal, decent people practice every day. But where there is good, evil is right there also.
The forces of evil are why we celebrate Memorial Day and remember and honor the supreme sacrifice of so many American men and women who fought against evil and fought for good. The forces of good are what compel us to continue fighting the forces of evil so that the sacrifice of others will not be in vain. The time of their departure has come, much too early. Now we are called to fight the good fight, in the hope of one day finishing our portion of this great relay race, running that we may obtain the prize (1 Corinthians 9:24) like those who have gone before us.
Father, only with Your power and strength can be take on such a lofty task. We speak not only of our Providential national life. We speak also of our Providential eternal home, for our citizenship is in heaven. You have promised, and that is as good as done, that “the way of the wicked will perish” (Psalm 1:6). The glory and honor, the good, of the nations will be brought into the New Jerusalem, “But nothing unclean will ever enter it, nor anyone who does what is detestable or false, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27).
To Your people who tarry on earth, You have said, “’I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’” (Hebrews 13:5-6).
Praise be to the One Who is for us! (Romans 8:31)