Let Freedom Ring

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. 
We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. 
It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, 
or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children 
and our children's children what it was once like in the United States 
where men were free.”  
Ronald Reagan

“The secret of happiness is freedom, the secret of freedom is courage."  
Carrie Jones

Alexandria at her first fire works show last month.
 One of my favorite 4th of July memories is sitting with my family up at the elementary school and watching the city of Ferguson's annual fireworks display.  We would always pack a lot of goodies, (which basically included dessert, dessert and more dessert) to munch on during the festivities.  This is a tradition that we loved to do even into our teen and college years.  As we got older the conversation always got more entertaining.  One of our favorite things to do was sarcastically say "Ooo" and "Ahh" after each big display and giggle at everyone else who was saying it seriously.

As I have gotten older and after having a kid this day has become more important to me.  When I was living at home it meant hanging out with family, stuffing my face with burgers and sweets, and watching the fireworks on that hill.  Now, each year I always wonder what my life would be like if it wasn't for the freedom we have in this country.  What kind of life would my child have?  I think of all of the men and woman who have fought and died for this freedom  I think of their families of soldiers who have died and how they must mourn their loss on days like today, but also how they must hold their heads up in pride because their loss was not in vain.  And the police officers, firefighters, EMS workers and their families who most likely are spending today alone because their spouse doesn't get holidays off.  It is on days like today I marvel at the fact that I can get in my car, take my family to a restaurant to eat and then come home and relax with my computer, typing this blog without censoring what I write.  On Sunday I will go to church and hear about the good news of Jesus Christ and unlike so many Christ followers around the world, I don't have to worry that the government will come and arrest us. 

Freedom gets me excited.  Freedom makes me happy.  I LOVE freedom (if you couldn't tell).

Every 4th of July I pull out my red, white and blue to wear because it stands for freedom.  I really don't care how cheesy or patriotic I look.  (And it is much for fun with a 2 year old that you can dress up). 

It also helps when you show up at a friend's house and they have done the same to their kid. 
We all have complaints about the government whether you fall on the left side, the right side or somewhere in the middle, but today is a day where we all become bipartisan.  We drop our labels and our prejudices and bask in the glow of freedom.  Because our differences are what make our country what it is.  And it would be kind of boring if it were any other way. 

When I think of my little girl growing up in a free country, it brings tears to my eyes.  As a country we have come so far when it comes to women's rights and rights for people who are different from us.  And now my daughter can be anything she wants to be.  There is nothing that she can't do (regardless of what her dad says).  Who knows, you be calling her Ms. President one day.   

She has my vote!
 So, take a moment to reflect on freedom.  Think of those who have given their lives for our freedom.  Think of their families.  Think of what your life would be like if you weren't free.  Teach your children about the value of freedom so they can teach it to their children and their children's children.  

Why are you thankful for freedom?


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