Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy Independence Day!

"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:17-18 NIV).

What a blessing to celebrate freedom! With flags waving in the wind and sparkling fireworks in the evening sky, today is a day set aside to observe the freedom of an independent country. Although it is sad to observe the current mess our country is in, when we look at the beginning of our country we are reminded of the violent past that made the eventual freedom possible.

Sometimes I wish we could go back to the days of our faithful forefathers when the country was young and based firmly on the foundation of trusting God. Yet this country has struggled more than once to find its own stand and definition of freedoms as with slavery, equality of races, women's rights, and more. The struggle isn't over for this 'new' country. Because we are such a mix of nationalities, a melting pot of individuals, there will always be more freedoms to define.

We are very blessed to live in a country that offers individuals the chance to be unique and not be labeled as 'different'. We have a long way to go yet on this road of freedoms and it may take us in directions we can't yet even imagine, but today I give thanks to God for the chance to worship where I choose, to praise God in public, to live as a Christian, and to write what I choose - all without fear of being arrested or tortured. I am so thankful for the freedoms we share and I pray that God is with us as we continue to stretch and adjust the boundaries of this land of the free and the brave.

I pray that we Christians remember to reflect the glory of Jesus Christ in all that we say and do, even if it challenges to look at things a little differently.

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