If you missed the live video of Restoring Love, be sure to watch it on-demand – see how here.
TheBlaze’s Billy Hallowell, Tiffany Gabbay, Benny Johnson, Jon Seidl and Jason Howerton all contributed to this post.
Glenn Beck packed Dallas Cowboys stadium to the brim on Saturday, July 28, for his highly anticipated Restoring Love rally, where he called for a return to a culture of service to “make America better than it is today.”
Restoring Love, for Beck, is much more than a series of events, but rather the beginning of a movement dedicated to reclaiming the values that have slowly been slipping away from our society.
The evening’s festivities kicked off with one of the most powerful renditions of the Star Spangled Banner most have ever heard, performed by newly naturalized American citizen Alex Boye. He was accompanied by a choir and the moment brought Beck to tears.
The atmosphere was electric and the energy palpable as the audience then welcomed the man behind Restoring Love onto the stage with a rousing standing ovation.
He explained that Restoring Love is the conclusion of a trilogy that included Restoring Honor, which was held in Washington, D.C. in 2010 and Restoring Courage, held in Israel in 2011.
“To have honor, you must be true to God,” he said. “To have honor, you must have faith.”
Below, Beck introduces Restoring Love:
Beck said that “courage” is critical if a person seeks the truth and that love is not just about “hugs and kisses,” but about service and charity.
America is great because “Americans are good.”
Beck then introduced a special segment dedicated to prayer and people’s individual faith in God. Originally, it was intended that the Reverend Billy Graham would deliver the evening’s prayer, but since he could not be in attendance, Beck said the only other option is that the prayer “comes from you.”
The moving video below chronicles faith-keepers from all different walks of life, sharing why they pray and what they pray for, from guidance for our elected leaders to the healing of a loved one.
Because music is such a transformative force in our culture, the night was filled with performances by recording artists who each had a positive message of charity and love to share. The first musical interlude of the evening was delivered by Alaska-raised recording artist, Kalai, who performed his original song, “All Rise – Pray.” The lyrics spoke about praying for peace and rising again in the face of adversity.
Beck took to the stage after Kalai concluded to showcase the other important part of the evening — a review of our nation’s priceless artifacts – some of which came directly from our Founding Fathers. America’s “inheritance” included a Liberty Bell, a cannonball from Gettysburg, and a rare bible (there are only eight in existence) that was actually printed by Congress and given to men serving in the nation’s armed forces. Beck also showed off an extraordinary painting of George Washington kneeling in prayer in the snow at Valley Forge.
“George Washington was no ordinary man,” Beck noted before Kevin Kern performed his song, “America’s Song,” dedicated to the nation’s first president. The lyrics spoke of Washington leading the charge at Valley Forge, his faith in God, and his journey from the plow to the highest office in the land.
“We’re still looking for another one [Washington],” the lyrics rang.
“So often America is in need of somebody — a leader — as great as George Washington,” Beck said in response as he came back on stage and spoke about our nation’s triumphs and tribulations – from the end of slavery to the rise of Jim Crow. He ceded that we’ve never been a perfect nation but that we must study our failures to become better than we were before.
The hymn “Amazing Grace” echoed softly in the background as Beck then sat at Abraham Lincoln’s desk — yes, Honest Abe’s desk — and read an actual letter from our 16th president. Below is that chilling letter:
If A. can prove, however conclusively, that he may, of right, enslave B. — why may not B. snatch the same argument, and prove equally, that he may enslave A?–
You say A. is white, and B. is black. It is color, then; the lighter, having the right to enslave the darker? Take care. By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet, with a fairer skin than your own.
You do not mean color exactly?–You mean the whites are intellectually the superiors of the blacks, and, therefore have the right to enslave them? Take care again. By this rule, you are to be slave to the first man you meet, with an intellect superior to your own.
“This kind of thinking set Lincoln apart,” Beck observed.
“In his day, it was revolutionary. Lincoln ‘sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat’… And freedom did come, ‘like the glory of the morning on the wave.’”
In the spirit of Lincoln, Kalai then performed “Battle Hymn.” The lyrics “glory, glory hallelujah” seemed fitting given the sentiment.
The night was full of so many poignant moments, history lessons, words of wisdom and inspirational music that it would be difficult to encapsulate in its entirety, but the core message of faith, service and a dedication to upholding liberty was clear for all in attendance. Beck explained that history is “an arc that bends in the direction of justice,” but “not on its own.”
“We bend it.”
“The Pilgrims said they would build a shining city on a hill,” he added. Perhaps that is why people from over 20 different countries came to Restoring Love — America is the standard by which other nations are judged, the beacon of hope for people of all walks, and from all over the world.
America, according to Beck, has its wounds that need time to heal, but “we have to move forward” and “return to basic truths.”
He explained that those truths include the simplest protest catch-phrase of all: “I am a man.”
Those words, to Beck, are “the first unspoken phrase of our Declaration of Independence.”
“I am a man …and “all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
Beck concluded the evening with what is being hailed his greatest, most impactful speech yet, charging everyone with a mission “to act, to commit, to shake the future.” And there was a rousing moment where he declared we are experiencing the “third Great Awakening”:
“Make America better than it is today,” Beck urged. “Every generation of America faces this challenge. Every generation. Some succeed. Some fail. Those who have failed, failed because they waited for someone else to act.”
TheBlaze’s Billy Hallowell provides a comprehensive look at these words to live by.
The night drew to a close with Matt Maher’s performance of “Hold Us Together” and literally ended in fireworks:
Please check back soon as this post will be updated with exclusive videos and pictures from Restoring Love.