Mark Moore traveled with me all last season as the speaker on the Believe tour. Mark is a gentle soul who pastored me in countless ways during our weekend treks in and out of Joplin. One of Mark’s main duties was to guide me through security, keep track of my phone and make sure I made the flights. Overall Mark was successful. Mark was on my mind today. I flew into Dulles last night and awoke with a mission in mind today. Those of you who know me intimately are aware of my love for History and, in particular, presidential biographies. Today was a very special, though difficult, day for me personally. I had to arrive at the Bolger Center for Leadership (which I have now dubbed “The Bolger Center for Bitter Middle Management”. It is more fitting. Perhaps the “leadership” staff works the weekends! Ha! Mark, you would be proud to watch me juggle the different subway connections and maps, oh my goodness, it was crazy! Ha! I only had about 3 hours to walk the mall today. (you can see my pics) The World War 2 monument has been added since my last visit to the capital city. As I made my way by the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Monument, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, and the Rotunda housing our most precious national documents my whole person was wound tight with emotion. First of all, I have never been to DC with Jen and that was sad to me as I saw so many older couples slowly walking and talking. I thought to myself that if Jen were with me I wouldn’t be so hurried about the whole day. I also thought about what I would say to my boys if I could explain the history behind all the stone, marble and ornate metal monuments on display. As I entered the National Archive Museum there was a father asking his two elementary age boys what the difference between the Constitution and Declaration of Independence was. I missed Riley then especially. I visited the National Archive Museum last. All day long I had been humming, “My redeemer lives”, to myself. I think it is Kathy Tricolli who sings that song. This is a really weird song to come to my mind after rocking to DC’s Rock 101.00 REALLY LOUD. I asked Alamo for a free upgrade and they obliged, (the power of asking is a big deal!). I had the sunroof down in the Chevy Malibu just enjoying the sunshine here. But for some reason that song was on my heart today as I scurried in random order up and down Independence Avenue. There is an awe to standing before the Lincoln Memorial. When his sacrifice and leadership become real to you it is humbling. There are signs as you enter the through the massive pillars to pay your respects by remaining silent. The words of the Gettysburg address adorn the walls. It is a huge experience for me. As a serious student of history my memory is constantly jogged of anecdotes and curiosities of past presidents. This song about my redeemer and my own strong sense of American pride were swelling within me all day. They were like two sets of railroad tracks running straight and true on a prairie. They both exist and have their proper place. It is not that they shouldn’t touch each other because from time to time they have one of those “x” thingy’s and they switch sides. The overflowing point of the day for me came at the Rotunda. Truth be told I didn’t really have time for this last exhibit; but I have never really seen our founding documents in all 3 of my previous visits to Washington. I ran the last 8 blocks and was quite winded as I waited just outside the iron gates to enter a room that housed 4 earth changing documents. I had my picture taken in the middle of the room so I would be surrounded by the revolutionary thoughts that changed the paradigm of what government’s should be for the past 200 years. These documents include the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and The Magna Carta, (which dates back 700 years of government policy). I spent to much time in the gift shop because I was in post card heaven. I am a post card nut and a history nut and this was . . . I digress. Benjamin Franklin said, “Democracy is a despicable form of government, but it is the best one we have found yet.” This country is very young in relation to the history of our world. It has been referred to by some as a 230 year test. Many people have died to establish and maintain our project with democracy. It hit me hard today just how American I am. I am very American. I like that. I am proud of that. The Holy Spirit hit today how much of a Christian I am. My heritage in Christ Jesus goes back to the foundations that formed this very earth. Kingdoms have been established and wiped away. The documents that my faith are built upon became life themselves and dwelled among us. Today as I looked at the fading ink on our 200 year old foundation I was reminded by a skip in my heart that the word of my faith is not faded. In fact that very Word lives within my earthly vessel. I pray for my beloved country. It matters to me because I see people when I see America. God loves people. I am at times distressed at decisions our country makes; but I take heart, for my redeemer lives.