Nine Days that Changed the World is a book about Pope John Paul II’s nine-day trip to Poland in 1979. The Pope’s pilgrimage laid the groundwork for the revolution of conscience that eventually brought down the Communist regimes throughout Eastern Europe. Thus those nine days really did change the world. Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day could very well be the One Day that changes our world this year.
During Pope John Paul’s first trip to his homeland after being elected Pope, he did not assemble an army. He did not set up a network of spies. He did not give rabble-rousing speeches. He did not go to inspire a revolution.
He just preached the love of Jesus Christ, the person who is Truth personified. And literally millions of people came to listen. Those millions of people looked around and saw that they were not alone. The Polish people had been living in an oppressive regime since the end of World War II. The Communist regime created fear. The fear created a spiritual isolation: people not speaking their minds, not trusting each other, consuming a constant diet of lies. People became accustomed to not speaking truths that were right in front of their eyes.
The Pope’s visit brought millions of people into the sunlight. At one of his appearances, people started chanting: “We want God. We want God.” They weren’t supposed to want God. They hadn’t known how many of their neighbors also wanted God.
They began being unafraid to live in the truth. And once truth could have its say, it began to take care of itself.
On Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day, millions of people saw that they were not alone. All those ordinary Americans who decided to Eat More Chicken were standing in line for religious freedom, for the institution of marriage, for free speech. They sat in the traffic jams out of respect and gratitude for the Cathy Family for taking a stand.
Every one of us who stood in one of those lines, or who sat in one of those traffic jams or who gloated on facebook over the photos, can see that we are not alone.
We are tired of the oppressive lies of the sexual revolution. We know that men and women are different, not interchangeable. We know that marriage is about children and what they need, not just about adults and how they feel. We know that sex is much more than a sterile recreational activity. We know that every sexual act is deeply significant, even when we treat our sex acts as meaningless and our sex partners like toys.
We believe that God loves each and every person into existence. We believe our spousal love is meant to be an image of God’s fruitful and faithful love. We are not ashamed to believe these things.
On Chick-Fil-A Appreciation Day, millions of Americans saw that they are not alone. We know we can say what we think in public.
More Christian businesses will refuse to be bullied by the Thought Police, and will instead stand up for marriage and family values. More people will show up to political rallies. More people will attend their school board meetings to find out what our children are really being taught. More people will get involved with their professional associations and steer their professions away from the shoals of political correctness. And yes, more people will get involved with the November elections.
The whole world is watching America. When our values go down the tubes, we take the rest of the world with us. If we can turn our country toward common sense and good morals, the rest of the world will benefit. But this will only happen if every person who ate a chicken sandwich on that historic Wednesday is emboldened, motivated and activated to move their own corner of the world in the right direction.
If all of us do our part, August 1, 2012, could well be the One Day That Changed the World.
Jennifer Roback Morse, Ph.D. is the Founder and President of the Ruth Institute, a project of the National Organization for Marriage Education Fund.