Sometimes it feels as if America is living through an Armageddon movie. We struggle with a destabilized economy, soaring national debt, an overburdened entitlement system, looming tax hikes, widespread unemployment, class warfare, ongoing wars, the threats of global terror and a nuclear Iran, and internal division and scandals, from "Fast and Furious" to the massacre in Benghazi, Libya. The list goes on and on.
Meanwhile, during this pivotal election season, politicians and lawmakers launch fiery attacks at one another, and several Twitter users threaten to riot if their candidate doesn't win the election this week.
Americans are struggling to find jobs, deeply concerned about the economy, troubled by the soaring federal deficit and frustrated with leaders who don't represent their interests in a nation torn apart by divisive politics. Many believe that our country is headed in the wrong direction and worry that their children's lives won't be so good as their own.
Is this what America stands for?
America is a country born of hardship, struggle and protest. It's a nation of people who share powerful ideas and a place where each of us is blessed with the opportunity to succeed on our merits, ambition, ingenuity and hard work.
We can express our opinions and ideas without facing persecution by our government, play a powerful role in policymaking and embrace our entrepreneurial spirit in pursuit of life, liberty and happiness.
We have come to a national crossroads. We can choose to embrace immorality, apathy, unmitigated greed, corruption, idleness, entitlement, incessant spending and divisive rhetoric. Or we can put our unique freedoms to good use, elect authentic leaders who serve our great nation, unite to emerge from our hardships, help our neighbors through adversity and treat one another with civility.
In less than 200 years, America grew from a cluster of colonies to the greatest nation on earth. Our hardships have been etched into our national soul -- the American Revolution, the Civil War, the Great Depression, Pearl Harbor, Sept. 11 and many others. We've survived our great struggles and emerged a stronger nation. We always have conquered adversity, even against insurmountable odds. This time is no different.
It's time to unleash the American spirit.
In the midst of this national turmoil, let's take a moment to reflect on who we are and what we stand for.
In Matthew 12:25, Jesus told us, "Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and every city or house divided against itself shall not stand."
One of America's great strengths is its ability to unite under a common goal and emerge from adversity together through hard work, determination and a spirit of brotherhood.
In the midst of all our troubles, America is suffering from a leadership crisis. We need our leaders to believe in American exceptionalism, to establish a core set of values and to stand by them.
We need leaders who understand that government is built by the people and for the people. America doesn't need leaders who are corrupt and seek office for personal gain.
Let's choose leaders who uphold the Constitution and who have the honesty and moral character to make decisions with full consideration for the greater good of the people and the future of America -- and let's unite behind them.
I encourage our next president -- whoever he may be -- as well as members of Congress and other leaders, to look inside themselves and ask: What can I do to serve this great nation and make it a better place by the time I leave office?
With strength of character, moral courage and the spirit of unity, we can emerge from this turbulent time and work to solve the complex problems our nation is facing.
It's time to put this turmoil behind us and resolve to rebuild our great nation.