I’ve always enjoyed this holiday. When I was a kid, I didn’t really understand what it meant, but I always loved the food, the fireworks, and the red, white and blue outfits and party favors. As I’ve gotten older though, it has also been a time of reflection on the amazing blessings we have in America.
I’m not ashamed to say that…I love America!
In fact, I love America so much that sometimes I just sit and think about how thankful I am to live here. The other night as I was doing this, I began reflecting on the story of our country and I felt like I almost got lost in it. I was picturing myself as an early 1600’s English believer in Jesus, having to bend my expressions of worship around what the government says to do.
I could imagine the cognitive dissonance that they dealt with, knowing that what the state (who also ran the church) was telling them to do was preventing them from living out their God given destinies.
I could imagine the zeal that arose within them, to break away from this oppressive system and to go to a land where they could worship freely. It was likely the same zeal that was in Moses when he confronted Pharaoh and told him that God said “let My people go so they can worship Me” (Exodus 9:1).
I could also imagine the incredible faith it took to sail across the Atlantic Ocean, all the way to the shores of Plymouth Rock. In the era of GPS though, I certainly cannot fully relate!
In that moment I became so grateful that those pilgrims were willing to do what they did. 400 years later, we are still enjoying great blessings in these lands that they consecrated to God, because 245 years ago the mandates that God gave them were enshrined in our constitution. This has given America what she is best known for- freedom.
Freedom gives us choice, which gives us the opportunity to chart our own course. This ultimately gives us the ability to follow the unique calling of God on our lives. However, as I’ve written to you before, as great as governmentally granted freedom is, it’s hard to enjoy it when you have sickness, disability or pain ruling over you.
On that note, let me tell you a July 4th story. July 4th, 1998 to be exact. I was 7 months into chemotherapy for leukemia and I was by all definitions a prisoner in my sick and disabled body. That day I had a wake up call that still impacts me to this day. It’s almost hard to believe, but it’s 100% true. Maybe it’ll give you some inspiration that will help you overcome your health ailments too.
Read it by clicking here- I Can’t Believe I Was That Bad
I hope you have a great time celebrating tonight! God bless you and God bless America!