Since the well-known radio pundit Rush Limbaugh died last month, his radio show has offered programming that has included many of his great on-air broadcast moments over the years. Under the idea of “Remembering Rush,” these soundbites of various lengths reveal again what he thought and how he expressed those thoughts to his many listeners.
Consequently, his listeners and fans are treated again to the ideas and ideals which endeared himself to them. I’m sure for these listeners and fans these are both wonderful memories and somewhat painful reminders of his permanent absence from them for the future.
Likewise, many of us in our Fayette community have just this past week suffered the loss of a dear friend, brother pastor, a sold-out Christian, respected Army chaplain, loyal patriot, and former opinion writer for The Citizen newspaper. His name is Knox Herndon.
With the idea of “Remembering Knox,” I offer here one of his Citizen articles from quite a number of years ago. What we see in it is what so many of us loved and respected about Knox, and that was his absolute sold-out faith in Christ and his patriotism and love of his country, our United States of America. Always with a “God First and Country Close Behind” resolve, Knox was passionate and unashamed to declare his loyalty to both his Savior and to the country he so loved and served.
Here’s his article entitled, “Practice what you preach,” which captures the essence of Knox’s heart.
He wrote, “I am a people watcher. My wife and I care very deeply about the directions our society takes. This watching is not done from a vacuum or from an unfair critical position but from a perspective of love and the caring for the souls of mankind. It is a perspective that believes deeply in the dignity of man, and the worth of the individual. This perspective is spiritual in nature and formed in the Christian faith in its message here on earth that through Christ, you are loved, forgiven for the past, and somebody special.
“If one seriously believes this, then they set about doing anything and everything they can to share this message with the world. Thus, we have churches, speakers, articles, mission trips, literature, music, organizations — Christian and civic — and on and on.
“Last night, Feb. 14, Dee and I attended a meeting of the Sons of the American Revolution in Fayetteville. At this meeting I was sworn in as a new member in the name of a blood relative by the name of Joseph Herndon. Joseph had been a private in the Colonial Army of the American Revolution. Had the American Revolution not gone the way it did, Joseph would have been hanged or shot as a traitor of the British Crown.
“At the ceremony, I again pledged allegiance to my country, our Constitution, our flag, and our way of government. The pledge I took, as a new member, stated: ‘We descendants of the heroes of the American Revolution who, by their sacrifices, established the United States of America, reaffirm our faith in the principles of liberty and our Constitutional Republic, and solemnly pledge ourselves to defend them against every foe.’
“I did not take this oath simply as a ceremonial rite of passage into an organization of a bunch of great guys. I took it as the way I feel deeply and have always felt. And if one takes this oath seriously, he or she will think differently, they will act differently, they will have a very, very different world view. And when they see their country and its citizens being led down a path of moral, spiritual and political decay, this ‘pledge’ will kick in and you will do any and everything within your power to keep America on track.
“After all, it is in the blood line to do so. Joseph Herndon would have had it no other way.
“Long live America and her freedoms, both spiritually, and politically!”
I can absolutely affirm that Knox Herndon believed and lived out this pledge until the day he died this past Monday.
So, join me in “Remembering Knox.” As I described him in an article I wrote about him right here in The Citizen last fall: A man of God. A man of prayer. A man of the Bible. A preacher of the Gospel. A legacy of ministry. A life of service to both God and Country. A Patriot. A loving family man. An outdoorsman. A steward of God’s creation. A kind and gentle soul. A brother.
And as I said back in that article and often to his face, “I love you, Knox.” And I must add this time, “Congratulations on your last and greatest promotion – to Glory! I will miss you tremendously as I live out my years here, but I know we will get back together in heaven by the grace of God in our Savior Jesus Christ.” And you would say, “Amen, brother!” And Amen!
And I must add, Knox would be pleased, honored, and “kinda tickled” to be mentioned in the same article with Rush Limbaugh. As the Army would say, “HOOAH!” (Knox, you taught me well! Rest in Peace!)
[Kollmeyer is Pastor Emeritus of Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Fayetteville. Follow Pastor Scott Ness and this vibrant church at www.princeofpeacefayette.org. Kollmeyer is also Interim Pastor at Word of God Lutheran Church in Sharpsburg as they go through the process of seeking their new pastor. Find videos of Kollmeyer’s weekly sermons there at www.woglutheran.org.]