This 4th of July most people will be off work. Some will take a family vacation. Some will stay home and grill outside. Pyrotechnics will shoot off fireworks in awe of the lights, sounds and pageantry.
Unfortunately most will not stop to consider just what this Independence Day means to us Americans.
In the 1600’s people left England for the “New World” in search of religious freedoms.
The Puritans of England did not like the ways Christians were told how to practice their religion. Kings and Queens demanded that the only way to pray, be married, baptized, be buried and carry out the sacraments of the church to be defined by the often revised Book of Common Prayer. Government is meant to govern people, not dictate how to worship God.
So some of the more daring Puritans left their home knowing there would be great cost for this journey. They understood the cost for such a journey, but also understood the cost for not worshiping God as He demands.
Through the 1600 and 1700’s they fought many foes to keep this land we now call America. Hardships and battles that we will never understand were fought so we could worship and call this land ours.
On July 4th of 1776 our founding fathers signed a document they created called the Declaration of Independence declaring our independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain. The Revolutionary War was fought from 1775 to 1783 to defend the Declaration we had declared and solidify us as a sovereign nation.
So today in 2014 we want to celebrate the 4th of July with lots of celebrations – and they are fine. But I ask that we stop to consider just what we are Independent from and what those original Puritans envisioned when they left the security of that shore with their family in search of a better way of living the Christian life they dreamed.
Three considerations for a worthy Independence Day celebration.
- Reflect on the reasons and people who gave their life in the pursuit of our freedoms.
- Exercise your religious freedoms by reflecting with God and the plans He has for your life today.
- Share with a family member or friend what this freedom means to you and how we got it. In today’s world of instant communication we fail to communicate the important things in life sometimes.
Freedom wasn’t free, and it was paid at great costs for you and me!
God please bless the USA!