Today is a day in which we should be taking the time to celebrate a nation ..a nation which is great and beautiful, strong and mighty, and united.
And I understand that many of us do not feel that way about our country today.
In fact, some of us would likely fall into the category of “disgruntled citizens” at this point.
Just last night, I read through a blog post by a controversial young Christian writer who claimed “America is not great. Not anymore..” and on and on he went, with all his reasons to support that statement. And the response section for that post contained, as intended, the ugliness of comment-fights and hate.
The laws, court decisions, and conduct of political leaders have been debated and discussed, ad nauseam, in recent weeks.
And I know that at this moment we could be more aptly described as the “Disagreed States Of America” as we struggle through a bit of a Unity Famine right now.
But we reap what we sow.
As a people, we seem to be sowing a lot of anger and being surprised at the harvest of hate.
We plant row upon row of entitlement and seem shocked when we unearth division.
But for today, will we perhaps instead go out and sow at least a bit of gratitude?
Will we, if even only for this one day, come together in gratitude that we even have the right to disagree – and for having the luxury to voice our opinions without fear?
And in addition to voicing our opinions, will we be willing to speak some words of thankfulness?
Will we be able to be a little grateful because, as we have all heard said:
..freedom isn’t free
..this is the home of the free because of the brave
..all gave some and some gave all.
And will we wear those phrases, not just on our $9.99 t-shirt from Kohl’s, but on our heart?
A debt of gratitude is owed to all who have put on the uniform on behalf of the United States of America and served – many giving “the last full measure of devotion” for this country, and its people.
Also, perhaps in the downtime before the fireworks display or after our burgers have been grilled, will we take the time to cover in prayer our troops around the world (including my nephew) who are far from home and protecting the legacy of sacrifice which America was built upon?
Will we pray protection for those in uniform as they answer the call for justice and mercy to prevail in the midst of modern day terror the likes of which we have never seen? And for peace for our military families here at home.
No matter what we feel today for this government or its laws will we take a quiet moment to hold onto gratitude for all that was given, and to pray about all that is to come for our nation and our soldiers in the days ahead?
Will we? Could we? Please.
Happy Independence Day.
Unapologetically Patriotic and Authentically Yours
“..that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.”
President Abraham Lincoln
Gettysburg Address, 1863