Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel recently condemned Chick-Fil-A, saying the restaurant chain did not reflect the values of Chicago and shouldn’t be allowed to do business there. He then entreated Louis Farrakhan and the Nation of Islam to come to Chicago and help clean up his city streets after this summer’s tragic violence.

Rahm Emanuel might just be surprised by the influence he just invited into his streets. In a sermon against same sex marriage, Minister Farrakhan recently observed that President Obama is “the first President that sanctioned what the Scriptures forbid.”

My question from Friday remains. What right does the mayor of Chicago–or any elected official–have to legislate like this in the first place?

Conscientious Objectors
Today I am joining hundreds of thousands of conscientious objectors to the prejudicial and elitist attitudes conveyed by mayors throughout the nation. I am putting my faith on the line–or, in the line I guess–by eating at Chick-fil-A.

I detest bigotry in all flavors, including homophobia. But the practices of many gay rights activists have themselves become so bigoted. Ministry friends have had their lives threatened simply for simply standing for their beliefs. Christians everywhere are being ridiculed for embracing a worldview that is simply framed upon the moral precepts of the Bible.

Black Pastors Take a Stand
Among my friends, those who have faced the most persecution from gay activists are black. Many of their fathers faced persecution from white authorities during the civil rights movement, and they deeply resent the comparison of the gay marriage movement to the legacy of their struggle.

“The President is in the White House because of the Civil Rights movement, and I was a leader in that movement,” said the Rev. Williams Owens yesterday during a press conference in Washington DC. “The President has forgotten the price that was paid.”

Owens announced a national campaign compelling black voters not to support President Obama as long as he continues supporting same-sex marriage. Significantly, almost 4,000 black pastors have already joined this campaign–many of whom strongly supported the President in 2008.

Also yesterday, the Democratic National Committee has announced plans for same sex marriage to be included on their 2012 party platform.

Positioning America for Advancement
As one of many called to pray for America, I often feel God’s heartbeat for the nation in the same way that others experience for an individual. And my deepest concern is for our future.

I long for our leaders to again position America for advancement. Our continued success depends upon retaining our freedoms as “one nation under God,” with governance reflecting the Judeo-Christian values that propelled us forward in the first place.

Currently, we seem to be empowering the very sins God most ardently warns against. And we seem to be navigating right into the “dire straits” God has warned us about.

We would do well to ponder the words that brought Dan Cathy into this storm of controversy in the first place. “I think we are inviting God’s judgment on our nation when we shake our fist at Him and say, ‘We know better than you as to what constitutes a marriage,’ and I pray God’s mercy on our generation that has such a prideful, arrogant attitude to think that we have the audacity to redefine what marriage is about.”

Prayer for Mercy for America
Father, with war potentially at our doorstep, with economic challenges and severe deficits, with anger and divisiveness from our city streets to Capitol Hill, we realize that without Your covenant mercies, we are headed for shipwreck.

And yet we together have openly continued to shake our fist at You and declare that we know better than You! Our arrogance, greed, sexual immorality and idolatry have all borne witness against us before Your Throne. The expression of our selfish defiance has brought abuse and wounding to ourselves and to others. Yet You invested Your very life to forgive us and redeem us from these very sins!

It is because of this expression of Your heart alone that we find courage to make this request. In all aspects of our lives, and in the stewardship of this nation, forgive us! Please you not hand us over to the full consequences of our unjust decisions. We cry out for mercy, a severe mercy that penetrates through our calloused hearts and consciences seared by sin!

Turn us, Lord. Forgive our sins, and cleanse us. Restore our conscience, personally and corporately. Position us for advancement again.

In Your covenant mercy, bring forth the fullness of this Third Great Awakening! Let this be how we again lead–by shining Your light to the nations. Restore us from the heart, for the cause of Your heart. In Jesus’ Name! Amen.