My children and I spent the fourth of July holiday at the beach this year. So very different from my Independence Day’s as a child. What I remember about July 4th growing up are small flags hanging from light posts in a one street downtown area. There where corn boils in the summer and parades. I used sparklers and we could see the town fireworks show from our backyard (which by the way, backed into a huge corn field).
This year July 4th was sand and surf. Small carnival rides like the carousel and Ferris wheel and fireworks on the beach.
We read the Declaration of Independence this year, an idea started from my good friend Andrew Odom, and talked about the meaning behind it. Why it was important.
All the while the gears in my head are turning and then on church on Sunday our talked focused on how that document can be used as an example of how to make change. It was very interesting and the impact on my current life was equally interesting.
I imagined what living in that time must have been like. Not everyone living in the colonies wanted to be separated from England and even those that did, I wonder if they knew what they were in the process of creating? So many people with different ideas on what to do and after the Declaration was written so many ways to move forward. The challenges that must have been overcome while something so completely new was brought into manifestation. It wasn’t just a day of independence or a day of freedom it was a day of courage.
My life is so new…and the challenges that have been overcome to create it are more than I thought myself capable of. The challenges I still have yet to face, I’m not looking forward to facing them. Like many colonists, a completely new way of looking at life is staring back at me and I must find the courage to take action to have that life going forward. I still stand on the brink of something I don’t quite understand. But I know it is different, so very different I am sometimes afraid of it. My previous life and ideas stand over me like the King of England and at the same time secret ideas being to gather and make plans for moving forward in a new way.
I think we miss the challenges that must be overcome when change like that happens unless we are living it. Can you imagine the courage it must have taken to take up that pen and sign your name to a document that said, I will live like this no more?
I am so grateful for that courage in others. Not only because it brought forth the United States, but also because it inspires me to find that courage within myself. To take up my own pen (or sword) and say, “I will live like this no more!”.
Go live courageously!