It’s no surprise to hear Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA), an avowed Christian, discuss how his faith sustained him after a maniac gunman attacked him and other Republicans last year during a charity baseball practice.
The inspirational survivor shared some powerful messages on Thursday during the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C., revealing that he firmly believes God protected people on the field last June.
“There were miracles that happened on the baseball field that day,” he said, telling one such story about Mississippi Rep. Trent Kelly.
The gunman’s first shot was apparently fired just 39 feet away from Kelly. While the bullet could have easily hit the congressman, a chainlink fence that was in front of Kelly miraculously became a shield.
“[The bullet] hit a link in the chain link fence and it veered just enough to miss him,” Scalise said. “You tell me God was not on that baseball field performing miracles.”
And there were other statements that Scalise made during the National Prayer Breakfast that were incredibly insightful — and worthy of deeper consideration, specifically when it comes to the First Amendment and the impact of faith on politicians.
“You can’t separate church from state,” the congressman proclaimed. “This idea that you can just check your faith at the door … faith is part of who you are.”
Scalise’s point was that, as a Christian, he sees the world through a particular lens, and that lens impacts how he behaves in his life, including the ways in which he votes on key issues in Congress.
In a world in which the term “separation of church and state” is sometimes used to invoke an idea that the Almighty has no place in government, Scalise took a very different approach to explaining the historical role of religion.
“This is a nation that was not founded in agnostic views,” he said, noting that the founding fathers openly discussed faith. “One of the unique things about the United States of America is that we were founded in a deep belief in God.”
And as Faithwire previously reported, Scalise also revealed how his personal faith helped him in the moments after he was shot on the baseball field as well as during the 15 weeks he spent in the hospital afterward.
“My first instinct was to start crawling,” he said, noting that his body suddenly shut down after he was shot. “The first thing I thought of was to pray. And I said, I’m going to put this in God’s hands.'”
He then asked God not to let his daughter walk down the aisle alone when she marries, and hoped to see his family again. Despite nearly dying, Scalise survived and believes that “God answered those prayers.”
He also said that there were scores of other occurrences on the field that day and in the following weeks and months that were surely “God moments.”