You may have seen the news this week that a federal appeals court ruled against a lawsuit to remove “In God We Trust” from our nation’s currency, dismissing claims from a Texas atheist that the phrase was unconstitutional. The lawsuit had called for the government “to destroy or recycle all circulating currency and replace it with new currency without religious inscription.”
Congress approved “In God we trust” for the nation’s currency in 1864, and made the phrase the official national motto in 1956. The Supreme Court has never decided a direct challenge to the motto.
I’m not sure how much difference such a symbolic statement like that makes, though I’m glad to hear of the court’s decision. It often appears that people trust in just about everything else, especially as it relates to their money. With those four words so prominently displayed on all our currency, Americans have become more materialistic than any nation in the world. But it sure doesn’t hurt to have that reminder staring at us whenever we handle money.
Like so many other things, I guess it’s not what motto you profess on the outside, but what’s going on in your heart that counts. It doesn’t really matter how many times you say “In God We Trust,” it only matters if you do.
That becomes especially clear when you commit yourselves to a time “devoted to prayer” (Col. 4:2) as we have at Shelby Crossings these past few weeks. There are so many things or programs or people that we are tempted to trust in–most notably, ourselves–but an intentional focus on seeking the Lord in prayer tends to bring to light how desperately each of us needs to trust in God, and God alone. I hope your time of devoted prayer this week has brought you to a new level of faith and trust in the Lord.
Listen again to the familiar words of Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.” Now, that’s a motto to live by!
I trust that you’re trusting in God this week, and I look forward to seeing you Sunday, as we gather together in His name. I’m praying for you.