About Me

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Joyce Swann has been a Christian since childhood and a prayer warrior for over forty years. She became nationally-known in the 1990’s because of her work homeschooling her ten children from the first grade through masters’ degrees before their seventeenth birthdays. She has been featured on Paul Harvey’s weekly radio program, CBN, and the 1990’s CBS series, “How’d They Do That?” She has been interviewed by “Woman’s World”, “The National Enquirer”, and numerous regional newspapers. The story of the Swann family has also been featured in the “National Review” and several books about homeschooling success stories. Joyce is the author or co-author of five novels, including “The Fourth Kingdom”, which was selected as a finalist in the Christianity Today 2011 fiction of the year awards and “The Warrior” which, since its release in 2012, has had over 50,000 Kindle downloads and hundreds of glowing reviews. She was a popular columnist for “Practical Homeschooling” for nearly decade and she has retold her own story of homeschooling her ten children in “Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother”. “The Warrior” is her first solo novel.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Will Someone You Love Have a Helen Keller Moment?

Helen Keller was born on June 27, 1880, in Tuscumbia, Alabama. At birth she was a perfectly normal child, but at the age of nineteen months she suffered an illness that left her blind and deaf. This is a tragic story, but if it had not been for two remarkable women, no one but family and a few friends would have ever heard Helen’s name.

Helen’s mother loved her little daughter desperately, and wanted to help her live as normal a life as possible. Helen’s father and half brother were less sympathetic and wanted her institutionalized. Finally, Helen’s mother persuaded her husband to contact the school for the blind to find a teacher for Helen. That teacher was Annie Sullivan, who was immortalized in the 1962 film The Miracle Worker. 

The film depicts the obstacles Sullivan faced in working with a child with whom she could not communicate and gives the audience insight into the seemingly hopeless situation. Yet, Sullivan never stops “teaching”, using sign language to spell into Helen’s palm the names for all the ordinary objects that Helen encounters each day. However, all of Sullivan’s efforts make no impression on the child until one day, after a particularly trying episode in which Helen throws a horrible tantrum and wrecks the family dining room, Sullivan once again takes Helen to the pump to fill the water jug and spells the word “water” into her palm over and over again as the water splashes across Helen’s other hand.

In that moment, Helen finally “gets it”. She understands for the first time that the spelling into her palm is not just a series of random touches—each touch has meaning. And in that moment, a whole new world opens for Helen. She was lost in a black, silent existence until a nineteen-year-old nearly blind “teacher” used everything she possessed to save her.

I began this post with a question: “Will someone you love have a Helen Keller moment?” That question may seem odd since you probably do not have a loved one who is both blind and deaf. However, the chances are good that you are close to someone who is unsaved and is, therefore, both blind and deaf to the all that God has for him.

Helen’s mother loved her and hoped that she could avoid institutionalizing her, but she did not know how she would be able to avoid it. When Annie Sullivan came into Helen’s life, however, she came with a different perspective. She had been institutionalized as a child, and she knew first-hand the horrors of life in an institution at that time—the rats, the substandard food, the cold, the abuse—and she wanted desperately to save Helen from that life. 

Everyone needs an Annie Sullivan; if you have a loved one who is unsaved you can be his or her Annie Sullivan. If you are a Christian, you know the horrors awaiting those who die without Jesus so do not be put off when that person you are trying so desperately to reach pushes you away. Pray for him or her daily; witness to him or her every time you have an opportunity—both with your life and with your lips.  And never give up, because you never know at what moment everything will fall into place and your loved one will “get it”. You never know when all that you have invested in him in time and prayers and a life lived as a good example will suddenly break through and deliver him from the dark, silent world of sin that that has separated him from God’s love.

During this Christmas season, remember all that Jesus has done for you, beginning with that humble birth in a manger, and share that story with everyone who will listen. Even if those you love do not experience their Helen Keller moment for many years, every time you “spell into their palms” you bring them one step closer to that day when it will all come together and bring them into the light.   

Joyce Swann is a nationally-known author and speaker.  Her newest stories,  The Thanksgiving Gift and The Christmas Cake, are available individually and in the box set The Holiday Collection.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

When You Pray and Pray for Your Children and Nothing Changes

What do you do when you pray and pray for your children and nothing changes? 

Most Christians pray regularly for our children. We pray for their presents, and we pray for their futures. Perhaps, precisely because we spend so much time praying for them we can become very discouraged when those prayers appear to go unanswered. likewise, when things are going well for them, we may pray less because we tell ourselves they "don't need it".

I find that, from time to time, praying from a fresh perspective can help every parent/prayer warrior become more focused and more committed. Today I would like to share some of the ways I pray for my children that may help other parents see prayer for their children in a little different light.
First, I set aside a specific time to pray for my children.
Second, I pray aloud. If I try to pray silently, I find that my mind begins to wander, so I pray in conversational tones.
Third, I pray for my children in the order of their ages. Since I have ten children, it is easy to “leave one out” if I do not follow a system. Therefore, I begin with the oldest and pray straight down the line to the youngest.
Fourth, I pray my children’s names. I have not heard of anyone else who does this, but I think it is a great way to begin prayer for each child. As we all know, every name has a meaning, so I pray that each child will become the person his or her name declares him to be.
Of course, some names are more obvious than others. My easy prayer names are Alexandra—helper of mankind; Christopher—Christ bearer; Benjamin—Son of my right hand; Israel—One who has power with God; Gabrielle—Woman of God; and Judah—The praise of the Lord.
My other children’s names took a little more thought when I first began praying them. Francesca is taken from the word frankincense and means “free”, but frankincense was used by the Jewish priests to burn before the Lord. Therefore, when I pray for Francesca, I ask God to help her to live a life that is free from the bondage of sin, and I also pray that her life will be a sweet aroma in His nostrils.
Dominic means “the day of the Lord.” When I pray for him, I pray that he will constantly tell those he comes in contact with that Jesus is returning soon and that they must prepare the way for Him in their hearts, in their lives, in their families, in their communities, in their nations, and in the world. I pray that Dominic’s constant theme will be, “Prepare the way for the Lord.”
Victoria means “victorious”. I pray that her life will reflect victory in Jesus in everything that she does so that when people look at her they will see what it means to overcome the world through faith in Jesus Christ.
Stefan means “a crown”. This one took some thinking on my part, but then I remembered that in his first letter to the Corinthians Paul likens the Christian life to a race. He says that to win the race and be awarded the crown we must deny ourselves the things that will keep us from doing our very best.  “Like an athlete I punish my body, treating it roughly, training it to do what it should, not what it wants to. Otherwise I fear that after enlisting others for the race, I myself might be declared unfit and ordered to stand aside.” (I Corinthians 9:27) When I pray for Stefan, I ask the Lord to help him run his race in such a way that everyone with whom he comes in contact will be able to see that he is running his race to win the crown and that they will be encouraged to join the race to receive their own crowns that God has waiting for them.
Fifth, I do not pray that God will simply bless my children. I cannot imagine anything worse than having them blessed if they are outside His will. I pray that if they are not living as they should He will withhold His blessings and will call them back to Him.
Sixth, I pray that our entire family will love what God loves, hate what God hates, and want what God wants. I pray that we will all love to go to church and that if any of us is in a church where we are not receiving proper teaching that God will put us in a church where we will hear His word preached honestly. I pray that we will all love to read the word of God,  that we will all love prayer and appreciate the privilege of being able to go to God with our petitions, and that we will all love praise and worship. In addition, I pray that we will each find the way in which we can praise and worship God best according to the abilities He has given us.
Finally, I pray for revival and ask God to allow each of us to have our full part in it.  He has put us on this earth to serve Him, and there is no better way to do that than to bring His message to the lost.
Remember, there is no wrong way to pray for your children. Just find a quiet place, open your heart, and allow God to teach you pray for the most precious gift He can give you. When you do, I think you will be surprised at the ways in which He will lead you and strengthen your prayers for those people you love most.

In answer to the question, "What do you do when you pray and pray for your children and nothing changes?" You keep on praying. God is not deaf, and He is not slow. He hears your prayers and is moving in your children's lives--even when you cannot yet see the results.

Watch Joyce host KSCE-TV's United with Christ and hear her talk about her novel, The Warrior, the story of a prayer warrior who changes the life of a stranger through prayer.

Joyce Swann is a nationally-known author and speaker. Her own story of teaching her ten children from the first grade through master’s degrees before their seventeenth birthdays is retold in her book, Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother. Her novel, The Warrior, about how one woman's prayers change the lives of those around her, has been downloaded over 50,000 times on Kindle and is also available in paperback. For more information visit her website at Frontier 2000 or like her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/frontier2000mediagroup.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Why I am Still Thankful

I first posted the following blog one year ago following the 2012 election. I am posting it again this year because I believe that we are now seeing the miraculous ways in which God works to bring about His plans—even when it seems that we have been defeated. One year ago I would never have imagined that in November of 2013 we would be witnessing the death of Obamacare and the rise of men in Washington who are standing for liberty and the principles laid forth in the Constitution.
This year I am still thankful for what God has done and is doing in our nation. Please join me in thanking Him for His constant provision:

Why I am Thankful this Year (from 2012)

This nation has just experienced what I consider to be the most disappointing presidential election of my lifetime. Millions of Christians probably agree with me because millions of us prayed and fasted and talked to everyone we knew about the importance of this election. We did everything we knew to do to make certain that our candidate was elected—and we lost. Yet, as we approach the Thanksgiving holiday, I am aware that I have much for which to be thankful.

First, I am thankful that Christians are beginning to appreciate what a wonderful gift God has given us in allowing us to live in these United States. I remember a time when politics was considered a “dirty business” in which Christians should not involve themselves; as a result, Christians did not discuss politics or political issues. I am grateful that Christians now realize that it is both our privilege and our duty to involve ourselves in the political process and to make certain that men and women of integrity are elected.

Second, I am thankful that God’s ways are higher than our ways. Many of us, including me, prayed the verses from II Chronicles 7:14, If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Most of us, including me, thought that God would allow us to win the election and that things would begin to get better. In light of the events of November 6, however, I now believe that God is doing something far greater than we had envisioned. I am seeing post-election Christians stand up and say, “Enough! We want our country back, and we won’t stop working until we get it!” God does not want to slap a Band-Aid on our land—He wants to heal it.

Third, I am thankful that God is always faithful. He admonished us to humble ourselves, to pray, to seek His face, and to turn from our wicked ways—and we did. We spent hours on our knees praying for ourselves, our neighbors, and our nation, and we can be absolutely certain that He has heard those prayers and that He will keep His promise.

Fourth, I am thankful that other Christians continue to join me in praying for our nation. I pray several times a day that God will heal our land and help this nation become the nation that He created it to be and that He will bless Israel so that they can live in quietness and peace. Twitter and Facebook attest to the many others who are holding this nation up before God in their daily prayers. We are praying for healing and revival that will cover the earth.

Fifth, I am thankful that God has a plan for this nation and His people that is far greater than anything we could ever envision for ourselves.
As we approach Thanksgiving I hope that all of us will remember to thank God not only for what He has already done for us but also for what He is now doing for us and what He will do for us in the days to come.

Joyce Swann is the author of Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother co-author of The Chosen, a dystopian novel about the battle of one U.S. family to restore the Constitution and stop the indefinite detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

National Park Service Video Praises Islam’s Contributions to Women’s Rights

Yes, you heard me right: The National Park Service has produced a video, at taxpayer’s expense, praising Islam’s contributions to women’s rights. The video states that Muslim women have enjoyed a whole bunch of rights not held by Western women until the 19th and 20th centuries, BUT Muslim women have enjoyed these rights since the 7th century. That list of rights includes:

  1. The right to be involved in politics
  2. The right to earn and keep their own money
  3. The right to work outside the home
  4. The right to own property
  5. The right to divorce
  6. The right for a woman to choose whom she marries.

Are you jealous yet? Before you rush down to your local mosque and convert, I would like to make you aware of some of the rights of Muslim women that the National Park Service left out.

Last Sunday, I had the privilege of hearing Nonie Darwish speak in person. Darwish is an Egyptian woman who was a Muslim from birth until she was thirty years old. At that time she converted to Christianity, although it meant becoming an outcast to her family and friends. She is the Author of “The Devil we Don’t Know” and the president/founder of Former Muslims United and Arabs for Israel.

Darwish did not mention the National Park Service video, but during her presentation she repeated several times that she could not imagine why any non-Muslim woman would EVER convert to Islam. She talked about the horrors of life as a Muslim woman and provided the audience with a list of some of the Sharia laws that are a major threat to our Bill of Rights and the U.S. Constitution. Darwish’s list included 42 laws, but for this blog I am sharing only those that deal specifically with women’s rights.

In the interest of full disclosure, I am, therefore, listing some of the rights Islam gives to women that the National Park Service forgot to mention. Darwish has noted on this list that these laws are found in the mainstream Islamic Sharia Book “Reliance of the Traveler” which has the stamp of approval by all Muslim religious leaders in the Middle East, including Al Azhar University.

  1. There is no age limit for marriage of girls. The marriage contract can take place any time after birth and be consummated at age 8 or 9.
  2. A husband has the right to beat his wife and does not have to give a reason either to her family or to the police.
  3. Rebelliousness on the part of the wife nullifies the husband’s obligation to support her and gives him permission to beat her to keep her from leaving the home.
  4. Divorce is only in the hands of the husband and is as easy as saying: “I divorce you” and becomes effective even if the husband says he did not intend it. Perhaps, the National Park Service should have listed a woman’s right to divorce as a woman’s right to BE divorced by her husband.
  5. There is no community property between husband and wife and the husband’s property does not automatically go to the wife after his death.
  6. A woman inherits half of what a man inherits.
  7. Parents have the legal right to perform female genital mutilation on daughters (al-Misri, Reliance of the Traveler, Chapter o4.3)
  8. A man has the right to have up to 4 wives and the wife may not divorce him even if he is polygamous.
  9. Marriage is a buyer/seller contract whereby the dowry is given in exchange for the woman’s sexual organs.
  10. A man is allowed to have sex with slave women and women captured in battle, and if the enslaved woman is married, her marriage is annulled.
  11. The testimony of a woman in court carries half the value of that of a man.
  12. To prove rape, a woman must have 4 male witnesses.
  13. A woman loses custody of her children if she remarries.
  14. A rapist may be required to pay only the bride-money (dowry) without marrying the rape victim.
  15. A Muslim woman must cover every inch of her body, which is considered “Awrah,” like a sexual organ. Not all Sharia schools allow the face of a woman to be exposed.
  16. A Muslim man is forgiven if he kills his wife at the time she is caught in the act of adultery. However, the opposite is not true for women since he “could be married to the woman he was caught with”.
  17. There is no retribution for parents or grandparents for slaying their daughters, even though Islam abolished killing infant girls. This is significant in supporting honor killing of daughters.

I would like to know how our federal government justifies spending our money producing pro-Muslim propaganda. I dare say that if a Christian group were to ask the feds to produce a video extolling the benefits of being a Christian woman, the Christians would be turned down flat and probably undergo an extensive IRS audit.

Our government is waging a war against Christians, and it is time for us to stand up and tell our representatives that we have had enough. They are fond of saying that under the Constitution we must have complete separation of church and state. While that is arguable, those are the rules that our government imposes on Christians. We must demand that they make these rules apply equally to all religions.

The Planner, the prequel to The Chosen, is Free on Kindle September 25-28th.

Joyce Swann is the author of Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother co-author of The Chosen, a dystopian novel about the battle of one U.S. family to restore the Constitution and stop the indefinite detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013


On November 17, 2006, the Kim family left San Francisco to make a road trip to spend Thanksgiving in Seattle with family and friends. After spending a pleasant holiday weekend with loved ones, the Kims began their trip home. James Kim had his heart set on staying at the Tu Tu Tun Inn at Gold Beach in Oregon. Although it was already late and their two daughters, Penelope, age four years, and Sabine, age seven months, were asleep in the back seat, the Kims decided to make the five-hour drive to Gold Beach. Kati Kim called ahead for reservations.

After a quick meal at Denny’s, the Kims headed down I-5 to Gold Beach, but they soon made a wrong turn. Before long, they realized that they were on the wrong road, but they agreed that they had gone too far to turn back. Kati consulted the map and found what she thought was a short cut to Gold Beach. As a result, the Kims made another wrong turn. Satisfied that they would arrive at Gold Beach in record time, Kati went to sleep, and while she slumbered, James made yet another wrong turn that took them up Bear Camp Road—a road that should have been blocked by a gate to prevent motorists from entering during the fall and winter months.

Kati awoke to find that they were hopelessly lost on a precipitous mountain road that led to nowhere. Snow was falling, and black bear were patrolling the forest. Terrified, James and Kati agreed to spend the night in the clearing where James had parked the car. They tried to call 911 but were unable to find cell phone service in the forest. When daylight arrived, the Kims decided to stay where they were and wait to be rescued. They remained in their car for three days, huddled together for warmth, with the engine idling and the heater running, until they finally ran out of gas. In a desperate attempt to save his family, James then took the tires off their car and burned them in the hopes that someone would see the smoke and rescue them.

On day seven James left the car to try to find help. He began walking down the road on which they had come, but, once again, left the road to take a “short cut” through the woods. On day nine, Kati and the two girls were rescued and taken to the hospital where they recovered. James eventually died of hypothermia, and on day eleven rescuers found his body in Big Windy Creek lying on its back in a foot of icy water.

This horribly tragic story provides a good parallel for what is currently happening in our country. We are headed down a dangerous road, and if we continue on this course, it will soon be too late to turn around. When my children were young, I told them that everyone makes some bad choices, but when we realize that we are on the wrong path we must stop and immediately start making better choices. We may not be able to undo all the damage that has already been done, but, in most cases, if we stop as soon as we know that we are on the wrong road, the damage will be minimal.

I wish that all Americans would hear this message: Stop stressing about the current problems that we face as a nation. Stop saying that we have gone too far for things to get better. Stop predicting that everything will get worse and worse until all hope is gone. We have the power to turn the car around and go back to responsible fiscal policies that will revitalize our economy and allow Americans to go back to work. But if we are not willing to start making better decisions and get involved in our political process and rid both houses of Congress of the legislators who are accelerating the car forward into a wilderness of wrong choices America will not survive.

If James Kim had turned around when he and his wife first realized that they had made a wrong turn, they would have, at worst, lost an hour or so of driving time. By returning to the point where they had gone wrong and getting back on the proper highway, the family would have been spared days of trauma, and James would not have lost his life. As in driving, in political matters it sometimes seems more expedient to continue on a road to nowhere than to turn around. Even when we can no longer delude ourselves that our current road will get us where we want to go, we try to compensate by simply taking another wrong turn. If we take enough wrong turns, it may become impossible to find our way back to the highway.

The choice is ours. We can continue on our current road to disaster, or we can start making better choices. We can find strong Conservative candidates who will stand up to the Washington D.C. elite and refuse to allow more wrong choices; we can start paying attention to the 2014 elections that can enable us to take both houses of Congress; we can get behind the candidates who are willing to turn the car around and hold them accountable for their choices. Get informed. Know your candidates. Make your voice heard. Today is the day to begin. Tomorrow may be too late.

Joyce Swann is the author of Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother co-author of The Chosen, a dystopian novel about the battle of one U.S. family to restore the Constitution and stop the indefinite detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Take on the Ashton Kutcher Video

On August 13 Ashton Kutcher delivered a speech at the Teen Choice Awards that caused quite a stir among conservatives. From Glenn Beck to Rush Limbaugh to Sean Hannity, everyone was singing the praises of this unlikely hero. I did not watch the awards show, but after seeing the video of the speech posted on virtually every conservative site, I reluctantly played it for myself.
I must admit that I was surprised to hear what Kutcher had to say on the subjects of “opportunity”, “being sexy”, and “living life”. The advice was mature and well-thought-out. If a young person were to take it to heart, he or she might make better decisions that would, ultimately, result in a better life for that individual. I do, however, see a few problems with Kutcher’s speech. The first is that the “Two and a Half Men” star obviously did not write the speech, which was clearly a shout-out for Kutcher’s new movie, “Jobs”, that was released within days of the Teen Choice Awards. Of course, there is nothing wrong with using a speech writer; it would be ridiculous for us to expect a celebrity appearing on a national show to write his own dialogue. It was a very good speech and accomplished exactly what it was intended to do (even including direct references to Steve Jobs), and Kutcher’s delivery was spot on.
Nevertheless, I am amazed that some of the smartest people on the planet are buying into the notion that Ashton Kutcher sent America’s young people a message straight from his heart that lines up perfectly with old-fashioned American values. Kutcher began with opportunity saying, “I believe opportunity looks a lot like hard work.” That statement is well put. In fact, it is such a good comment on opportunity that it has been around in various forms since the early 1900s and is frequently attributed to Thomas Edison who is credited with saying, “Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” Now, I am not suggesting that the comment should not have been included, but I would have liked to see him credit the source.
Kutcher then moved on to “being sexy”. He said, “The sexiest thing in the entire world is being smart and thoughtful and generous. Everything else is crap.” I am certain that parents everywhere leapt to their feet and cheered when they heard this statement, but I had a hard time believing that Kutcher meant a word of it. If he believes what he says, why did he and Demi Moore tweet a photo of themselves in bed together on their fifth wedding anniversary? If “everything else is crap”, why did he appear naked on Ellen DeGeneres’ show on September 11, 2011 to promote his role on “Two and a Half Men?” By Kutcher’s own definition those actions would be nothing more than “crap”.
Finally, Kutcher moved on to “living life”. He said, “When you grow up, [you accept that] the world is the way it is. Your life is to live your life inside the world.” Then he went on to encourage America’s youth to build a life for themselves outside the mainstream instead of simply accepting the life that someone else may think is good enough. Very good; very Steve Jobs.
In a time when we see so many celebrities promoting the most foul behavior, Ashton Kutcher’s speech was a breath of fresh air. I have no doubt that he has applied the virtues of hard work and seizing opportunity to his personal life. I do wish, however, that he would practice what he preaches about “being sexy” and set an example for his young fans with his actions as well as his words.

Joyce Swann is the author of Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother co-author of The Chosen, a dystopian novel about the battle of one U.S. family to restore the Constitution and stop the indefinite detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Why Would Anybody Want to Be an American?

As an American-born citizen whose parents and grandparents were also American-born citizens, I cannot imagine why anybody would NOT want to be an American. I grew up in an era where patriotism was the norm. School children would lock arms and walk around the school grounds chanting, “Hey, hey, get out of our way; we belong to the U.S.A!” Our elementary public school song books included “America the Beautiful”, “My Country Tis of Thee”, and “The National Anthem”, as well as the official songs for each branch of our military. As a third and fourth grader I would feel my chest swell with pride as I, along with my fellow students, sang these songs to the top of my lungs.
We all knew that it was the greatest thing in the world to be an American. As I grew older, I still believed that being born an American is a gift like no other. Often, I would feel an overwhelming sense of awe at having been so privileged. At the same time, however, I understood that while people from other countries might appreciate many things about America, they also had ties to their own countries. Even if they chose to live here, they might want to retain their citizenships from the countries of their births. Yet, there are many who want not only the privileges of living in America but who also want to BE Americans.
In order to gain some insight about why people from other countries want to be Americans, I have turned to those who have recently been awarded the privilege of American citizenship. Here are some of my favorites:
A couple of years ago I heard about an East Indian man who was asked why he had chosen to come to America. He replied, “I wanted to live in a country where the poor people are fat.” I cannot imagine any American-born citizen ever giving this response because it is so removed from our way of thinking. But to him it made perfect sense.
A CNN interview on July 4, 2011, with some American citizens who had been sworn in that same day at ceremonies held in cities all over the United States is especially insightful. I was surprised to discover that an inordinate number of them held doctorate degrees and could have made a good living almost anywhere in the world. They had not chosen America because they were “poor immigrants” who hoped for an opportunity to leave poverty and squalor behind. They had chosen America for reasons far beyond the dream of becoming rich.
One man from Iraq said that after he had been in this country for only a few weeks he saw someone walking his dog. The dog was wearing socks, and the Iraqi asked the dog’s owner why he had put socks on his dog. The owner replied that the sidewalk was hot and the socks would keep the dog’s feet from being uncomfortable. The Iraqi was astonished. He said that he could not imagine living in a country where people wanted even their animals to be comfortable. He finished by saying, “People would rather be a dog in America than a human in Iraq.”
A Nigerian man who has his PhD said that he had wanted to become an American citizen because in his country people do not even have clean water. He said that he wished Americans would travel to other countries and see the way the rest of the world lives so that “we would appreciate what God has given to this country.”
Yes, God has blessed America far beyond anything that anyone could have dreamed of 237 years ago. As a result, we owe Him a great deal. Because we have been given much, much is required of us, and most of the time we have done pretty well as a nation in responding to problems in the rest of the world. We are, by far, the leader in sending missionaries to other parts of the world. We have given trillions of dollars in foreign aid, and we are the first to send relief in times of natural disasters. We are a giving, generous people. Nevertheless, some of our best-known politicians and religious leaders apologize for America. They have proclaimed that we are to blame for most of the world’s ills. Whether it is AIDS in Africa or the consumption of too many natural resources, America is to blame. We are told that we are a greedy, selfish, spoiled, pampered and altogether bad people who owe the world an apology; they then add insult to injury by offering an apology on our behalf.
I, for one, am tired of being vilified by these men who have received so much from what is undeniably the greatest country on earth. God has blessed us, and we, in turn, have blessed others. I hope that anyone who has ever felt guilty because America has so much will remember from whence those blessings came. We must always acknowledge that God is the author of our story, and we must always live our lives to honor Him and to show others the same kindness and generosity that He continues to show us. People who have lived without clean water, sufficient food and a just system of government know exactly why they chose to come to America. You never have to ask the guy who would rather be a dog in this country than a human in the country from which he came, “Why would anyone want to be an American?”
Joyce Swann is the author of Looking Backward: My Twenty-Five Years as a Homeschooling Mother co-author of The Chosen, a dystopian novel about the battle of one U.S. family to restore the Constitution and stop the indefinite detention provisions of the National Defense Authorization Act. For more information, visit her website at http://www.frontier2000.net