It’s hard feeling truly thankful going into this holiday season. The recent election and the uneasy feeling that it was stolen has a lot to do with that.

The ongoing troubles in the economy, impending downturn and the continuing day-to-day struggle just to keep a roof over your head and put food on the table also contribute to the misgivings this season.

But perhaps of deeper concern as we face Thanksgiving, Hanukkah and Christmas is the feeling that the once-great society we live in has turned its back on God.

Some of us who are believers have begun to feel like outsiders in our own culture, which has been hijacked by the immoral, the irreverent, the destructive and the just plain vile.

This isn’t the same feeling as atheists, say, claim to feel when they view a Christmas display and whine that they are excluded, as happened recently in Santa Monica, California.

Because of an atheist’s hatred of Christianity, general contempt for the community and organized effort to steal a beloved local tradition, the city, with a federal court’s blessing, has now shut down holiday displays that were an annual event for 60 years.

No, this feeling of estrangement for Christians is not mere jealousy. Nor is it a consequence of choosing to hold an antisocial, nihilistic belief. It goes much deeper.

Our very roots as a civilization are under attack, and because this is America, our freedom is at the heart of the matter.

No less a person than the president himself, through his henchmen in Health and Human Services and his mandate to provide insurance coverage for abortions and contraceptives, has challenged the right of Christians and Jews to be who we are.

It should be no surprise; it was a long time coming. Every lawsuit to remove the Ten Commandments, every prayer ban, every block to the teaching of biblical values, every article belittling evangelists, every interviewer fawning over Richard Dawkins, every “diversity” program that shut out believing Jews and Christians — all of it led up to this moment when the president of the United States has chosen to toss out the First Amendment for the benefit of political dogma.

And every sign is that it’s going to get worse. The day may be coming when merely speaking of God in public will be deemed a challenge to the state.

America was built on biblical values. The idea that human beings are created by God is the basis of human rights. Without that understanding, rights are merely passing fads, and we are mere animals, bags of mostly water that can be used, abused or disposed of with no consequence.

All our freedoms, and our tolerance of other ideas, proceeds from that relationship with God. Now, we have a culture that has taken advantage of those freedoms and tolerance, but does not respect them. There are many on both sides of the political aisles — though mostly on the Left — who will not tolerate Christians or Jews, and they have no qualms about matter-of-factly violating God-given rights.

Across the sea, we see Israel isolated against an array of barbarians. Here at home, the barbarians are actively working to eliminate all but the state religion of atheistic nihilism.

In this darkness, let those of us who believe clasp hands in firm fellowship, bow  our heads in humility and pray for our nation. Be thankful for each other and for God’s eternal promise that he will not abandon those who love him.