If it were possible to resurrect our founding fathers, I’m certain that we would be reading headlines like: “George Washington called. He wants his country back.” I’m with him. I want my country back, don’t you?


Where is our republic anymore? Where is the courage we really need to turn things around? If you’re paying attention, you should be pretty peeved with what’s happening to your country right now — but being peeved won’t change anything. We’ve been suffering for so long without real leadership — on so many levels — that we don’t realize how leaderless we have become. It should awaken us — to the point of getting beyond useless complaining and into taking humble, honorable action. Yesterday, for instance, John McCain arose from his personal health struggles to make an appearance before congress. At first, it seemed very valiant and patriotic. He made a strong appeal for bipartisanship in the healthcare debacle — but then he voted along party lines. Really, Mr. McCain? Shouldn’t we put the brakes on the notion that a quick fix to this mess is possible?

Houston, we have a problem - Michael Anthony Courage Matters Blog

The actual phrase used by the Apollo 13 crew was, “Houston, we’ve had a problem.”

President Obama took over a year to court opponents and supporters before pushing to pass “The Affordable Healthcare Act,” (which is anything but affordable). He took the time necessary to ensure he had the votes to pass the bill — the one some people are now rightly seeking to repeal and replace (and if you’re upset with me for saying that, I’ll look for your comments, below). The current version is laden with so much government sugar, spice and regulation that it has literally choked the productivity of companies. It’s ruined insurance as we knew it. And, it’s stifled families, too. That’s not opinion; it’s fact. 

The bigger problem now is the big assumption: Government should take care of you from the cradle to the grave. In other words, the federal government is your new God. You can, and must, have faith in it to provide for you and save you from everything. Orwell’s 1984 is here, just a few decades late.

If you’re a millennial, put down that glass of Cabernet Sauvignon long enough to let that last paragraph sink in, because your generation is going to be more enslaved than any other in the history of America — because America’s lack of leadership is now a pandemic. If you’re not a millennial, then you should be concerned about your children and grandchildren, because unless we start standing up and speaking out, they’re going to have it even worse than the millennials. 


Houston, we have a problem* — and it’s not on the moon, but down here, on earth. More specifically, it’s in the White House and in both houses of congress. It’s a leadership void, and brothers and sisters, it’s massive. In fact, America is hemorrhaging, and if we don’t do something now, I’m afraid we’re going to bleed to death. What I mean is this: the slow and painful death of America is accelerating before our very eyes — and no one seems to give an old-fashioned darn. We’ve allowed love for our own reputations to surpass our love for country — and we’re all starting to drown as a result.

In our personal lives, too much debt enslaves. It’s no different for a nation. It’s great to help people who truly need it. I’m a pastor, and I’m all for helping the poor, the needy and those who cannot help themselves — but even Jesus said, “the poor will always be with you” (Matt. 26:11). But are we actually creating a nation of slaves as a result? I think we are, and I’m not afraid to say so loud and clear. Do you really think the health care debacle our former president and congress created was really about helping the poor? I don’t buy it for a minute, and if you do, I want to challenge you to put partisan politics aside and look at the forest through the trees: I think it was really about getting more people dependent upon the sugar daddy called big government. Once you give a baby a bottle, fat chance of pulling it away without an earful of screaming. Hence the screaming about all those who will be left high and dry if we take away the bottle that President Obama fed America.

GIVE A CRYING BABY A BOTTLE AND TRY TO PULL IT AWAY. You’re in for an earful of screaming. Welcome to any attempt to repeal Obamacare.

I hope you don’t think this is a pro President Trump rant — because it’s far from it. I don’t think he’s handling this at all like a master negotiator and deal-maker would. And if Mrs. Clinton were in his shoes, I’m confident we’d be on an even faster track toward all-out socialism — in the name of fairness and equality, when it would really be about control. Socialism, if you know your stuff, is diametrically opposed to the Constitution, to America, to freedom and to liberty. It’s even opposed to Christianity, though many want you to believe it’s the closest thing to it, just without Jesus. It’s actually sinister. Socialism is legalized enslavement where the government determines what — and who — is important. Sorry, Senator Sanders, but it’s true.

The fact is that we can’t support everyone, but if we try, we’ll train everyone to keep their hands out for more, more, more. It will perpetuate the downward spiral. Human nature will welcome it. Let’s face it: if I can get something for “free,” I won’t care who paid the bill. I’ll just take all I can and enjoy the ride. The light at the end of that tunnel is an absolute train wreck.

Personally, I’m appropriately angry that the lack of leadership by my generation (and the one before it) created a mess of a problem for millennials — and for everyone coming after them. My children, now thirteen and eleven, will have to be taxed so much that they will literally face an enslavement created by big government unlike any we have seen in our history.

It’s all happening right under our noses — because people like you and me have welcomed it by our complacency. You should write and call your congressman and the White House and humbly demand this partisan nonsense stop. you should consider running for office — and if you get elected, be a LEADER with the courage to make important decisions that may not be politically popular, but best for a free, democratic republic. I’m sorry, but America will never be great “again,” or greater than ever without real leadership. So far, we aren’t seeing real leadership very much at all.

“The time is long overdue for humble action. We can’t wait any longer. You may be a person of prayer, but a bit of elbow grease must often accompany bent knees.”

CHRISTIAN? Get your head out of your bucket. If you’ve been waiting for a divine bail-out from America’s problems, in the form of Christ’s return, I want to challenge you to consider that you may subconsciously be using it as a veiled excuse for being a courageous leader.

If you’re a Christian, I hope you aren’t sticking your head in a bucket, holding out for the Rapture or Christ’s return. Far too many are. Hey, I believe in Jesus’ return — but we Christians need to do a good bit of repenting for using the Rapture and the Second Coming as excuses for doing what we need to do to make things right. In America, we’ve been given a sacred trust, and by the looks of things we don’t seem to grasp the task. The time is long overdue for humble action. We can’t wait any longer. You may be a person of prayer, but a bit of elbow grease must often accompany bent knees.

The return of Christ may be a long, long way off. If you knew Christ’s return were centuries away, would you live with the kind of apathy many of his followers are displaying today?

Ben Franklin said it well: you “have a republic — if you can keep it.” We won’t keep our republic without solid, selfless, humbly courageous leadership. It’s time you become the solution we need by living commendably, courageously standing up and speaking out about the nonsense that has become the new America — before it’s truly too late.

*https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/Houston,_we_have_a_problem: The origin of the phrase was in the past tense: “Houston, we’ve had a problem here.” The crew of the Apollo 13 moon flight, used it to report a major technical problem to the Houston base. The phrase is often misquoted as “Houston, we have a problem.”  See Houston, We’ve Had a Problem (NASA).


Michael Anthony and Family

ABOUT ME: Most of the lessons I’ve learned in life I’ve learned through failure. I typically publish my blogs Tuesday through Friday, here and on Facebook. We welcome and read comments from readers just like you because they help us (and others) think and grow. Don’t be shy. Chime in.

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Michael Anthony, CourageMatters.comA Call For Courage, Michael Anthony I'm a husband, father, inspirational speaker, podcaster, blogger, and Lead Pastor of Genesis Church, in York, Pennsylvania, where I live among farm animals and snack foods. I'm the author of A Call for Courage: Living With Power, Truth and Love In An Age of Intolerance and Fear (Thomas Nelson Publishers), and the soon to be released Courageous Life™ Motivational Planner. Both are available wherever books are sold. Send speaking, interview, and guest appearance inquiries to info@couragematters.com. , or click here and do your thing. For keynote speaking, interview and guest appearance inquiries, contact info@couragematters.com.
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