By Jake Hoffman for Townhall
These are dark days for our nation. They are exhausting, terrifying, maddening, and confusing. We’ve watched Democrats and radical Marxists demean and disenfranchise tens of millions of voters. We’ve listened to their words about what is to come—openly opining of their plans to usher in an era of one-party control that will last for generations, if they are allowed to succeed. We’ve watched their tsunami of executive orders and legislation in the early weeks of the Democrats’ newfound power that will result in less freedom, less prosperity and greater government control over nearly every aspect of our lives.
These are dark days indeed.
Yet, as I watch many of my fellow countrymen grapple with the feelings of frustration and despair sowed by the Democrats’ fringe agenda, I am reminded of scripture.
Psalms 23 tells us, “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me…”
So often, as believers, we see this passage—a passage we’ve all known since Sunday School—and we focus on the “for You are with me” part of the scripture. Of course, this part of the verse is powerful, yet we should likewise find encouragement and peace in how the valley is referred to—the valley of the “shadow” of death.
Shadows, while terrifying, can’t hurt us. In this world, we can find immense peace in knowing that the trials and darkness we face are mere shadows. Like Paul and Silas in Acts 16, no matter how dark this world becomes we can sing praise to the Lord Almighty because through the grace of Christ’s sacrifice nothing in this domain can stand against us so long as we place our faith in Him.
In addition to the Scriptures, I find myself being drawn more and more to the words of our Founders. As I write, I am particularly drawn to the words of the Declaration of Independence.
“When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another…
“But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”
While the world has changed since those words were first penned, the evil hearts of despots, both at home and abroad, have not. Similarly, our duty to dissolve and throw off the political bands that threaten our liberties has not.
So, despite the darkness of these days, we keep fighting. Not with weapons or lawlessness, but with faith, scripture, ideas, words, and the time-tested principles of freedom, liberty and individual responsibility that have, for more than two centuries, resulted in the greatest opportunity for happiness and prosperity the world has ever known.
Never in our nation’s storied history has there been a more important moment for citizens of every persuasion to step up and engage in this battle—a battle for the very soul of our nation.
Never has there been a more important time for a new crop of courageous leaders to step forward in resolute conviction to return this nation to its rightful place as the shining city upon a hill—a beacon for free people everywhere.
You see, America doesn’t suffer from a lack of principled leaders, it merely suffers from a lack of principled leaders willing to step up to the calling of elected, servant leadership.
Our nation suffers from the illusion that the great men and women in history were in some way better, more qualified, and stronger than the men and women of the present. We suffer from the myth of self-doubt perpetuated by the monstrosity of a government so big that it leaves everyday citizens feeling small and inconsequential.
Yet, as the world darkens, as society and our politics becomes more unstable, the solution is not to recoil in exhaustion, fear and disgust. The solution is greater engagement.
America needs modern day Washingtons, Jeffersons, Reveres, and Franklins to step forward and lead. Our nation needs a rekindling of the quiet heroes of the Greatest Generation—the men and women who selflessly sacrificed to overcome fascism and communism in the 20th century. No matter how insurmountable the challenges we face may feel, the answer lies with everyday Americans simply having the courage to faithfully step into the lion’s den as unwavering voices for truth.
If we allow the absence of everyday leaders to persist, it will serve only to amplify and heighten the confusion, isolation and desperation felt by too many of our fellow patriots, leaving our nation vulnerable to the whims of emotion and mobs.
The road ahead—to hold the line against the impending radical agenda of Washington, D.C., despots—surely won’t be easy; however, it is a road that we must travel with steadfast resolve and conviction in the pursuit of truth, justice, and constitutional self-governance.
We must have the courage to step into the colosseum of elected politics for the sole purpose of protecting the exceptionalism of our nation, and the very foundation of freedom itself.
Now is the time to lead. The battle we’ve been fighting like hell to stave off is now upon us. We must engage, have hope, and persist in this fight, for the price of failure is far too high.
May God give each of us the strength, courage, and fearlessness to overcome the darkness of the present and save this last bastion of freedom for all of mankind.
Jake Hoffman is a member of the Arizona House of Representatives, contributing columnist at Townhall, and the President and CEO of Rally Forge, one of the nation’s top conservative communications and media strategy firms. Follow him on Parler at @JakeHoffman.