Is a new Great Awakening America’s best chance at survival? On radio this morning, Ralph Reed, founder of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, joined Glenn to discuss his new book Awakening: How America Can Turn from Moral and Economic Destruction Back to Greatness. In the book, Ralph lays out a plan rooted in faith, personal responsibility, and liberty that could have the power to restore America.
To begin, Ralph laid out some alarming statistics that show just how much American society has declined. Describing it as “the almost unchartable chaos that is the American cultural landscape,” Ralph explained that we now live in a country where 50% of marriages end in divorce, 40% of children are born into single parent households, 80% of New York City public school graduates are considered functionally illiterate.
“What caused me to write the book was wrestling with this question: Is it over? Is the experiment a failure? And is America… a great global power that is in irreversible decline,” Ralph said. “And the answer is: Yes – without a spiritual awakening.”
When you look at American history, it is clear the United States has rebounded from dire straights before. Ralph believes it is possible for such a restoration to happen again, but it will require an awakening.
“The truth is that episodically and, I argue in the book, cyclically, there have been moves of God that historians call great awakenings,” Ralph said. “There have been at least three, some argue four, in American history. And at each point, we looked like we were done for, and it turned around. It’s happened before. It can happen again.”
Glenn questioned whether we are too far down the rabbit hole at this point to turn things around. Our finances are as bad as they’ve ever been, and we have allowed our constitutional rights to be dramatically eroded. So what would it take to revive the country?
“I argue there’s a spiritual cycle. I’m not a determinist. But the reality is: It’s like an alcoholic or a chemical dependent. The hitting of the bottom is not the sign that it’s necessarily over. It’s actually the beginning of the turn-around,” Ralph explained. “You have to reach the end of yourself as a society, just as people do as individuals. So the irony of this is: At the moment that people are counting you out and saying you’re done for, that’s the beginning of the turn-around.”
“I’m not a prophet. I’m not in the prediction business. I can’t say this is going to happen,” he continued. “What I can say is this: Historically, whether leading up to the Civil War, in the 1970s, [or] prior to the American Revolution, when enough Americans get on their knees and repent and humble themselves and cry out to God for a renewal, it has happened every time.”
On that point, Glenn is fully onboard with Ralph’s analysis.
“I agree,” Glenn concluded. “Ralph, you know we have had this conversation a million times. The next Great Awakening is the only solution.”