Sunday, June 26, 2016

Brexit: My son's point of view

Freedom lovers,feel free to write and tell him that he is wrong!

Many of you will have read or watched Lord of the Rings.  In this story Hobbits live in a peaceful section of Middle Earth, smoking their pipes and drinking their beer, oblivious to the fact the rest of the world is dramatically changing around them.  While the story ends happily there is a foreshadowing that the world of Hobbits will never be the same again…. that reality of the real world will eventually overtake them.

This is how I view the exit of the UK from the European Union.  Many that voted “Leave” just want to sit in their Hobbit hole and smoke their pipe in peace.  They view the EU as imposing arcane rules (straight cucumbers anyone?) that make no sense to their daily life and events far away from them have no meaning on them.

You would think given the history of England that the British people would understand deeply how wrong this train of thought is.  

I cheer for the England football team playing in Euro 2016 with the crowd singing Rule Britannia.  

To thee belongs the rural reign;
Thy cities shall with commerce shine:
All thine shall be the subject main,
And every shore it circles thine.
"Rule, Britannia! rule the waves:
"Britons never will be slaves."

The great empire of Britain was built on trade.  Yes the Royal Navy was a worldwide force to be reckoned with.  Royal charters founded the first global companies such as the East India Company, and the London Stock Exchange provided the financial backing.  But the key to British prosperity was trade.  

Fast forward to today.  England no longer can stand on its Empire to provide influence and prestige.  We are living in an interconnected world that is dominated by the largest trading partnerships the history of the world has ever seen.  The North American Free Trade (NAFTA) unites the USA, Mexico, and Canada into a trading block.  China is its own trading behemoth.  The Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) came into existence earlier this year.  And of course the European Union.  These trading blocks are where the power lies, decides who has influence, and who becomes prosperous.   England on its own may now have more say over its internal affairs… but not being a part of a global trading block will eventually mean Britons will become economic slaves.  So much for knowing our history.  

But there is another part of our combined history that should not be forgotten.  Along with the glorious trading empire of Britannia, parliamentary democracy, and London as a financial global powerhouse was the equally important core belief of Christianity.   England is the country that produced many of the world’s greatest missionaries including Saint George, David Livingstone, James Calvert, William Tyndale, and Charles Wesley to name just a few.  The King James Bible is the most widely printed book in the history of mankind.   If one thinks of the world as being both physical and spiritual, then one must accept the argument that English prosperity has come less from the charter from the Royal Family or decisions by Parliament but from the blessing of God on the nation.  

So let us keep that in mind as we sit in shock today at the decision made by the people of England.  The future of England, in or outside the EU, has less to do with the decisions made by the government in Whitehall but more on the fervent prayers of the people… not for Wayne Rooney to score the winning goal in Euro 2016, not for God to bless the gracious Queen, but for God to truly bless the Nation of England, now and in the future.    

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