July 4, 2021

Freedom is one of the qualities of American life we as a people value most.  Today we will be celebrating 245 years of America as a free and independent country.  For most of us, this means that we are free to worship, choose a career, and carry on with our lives without any fear of repercussions from those who govern us.  More than this, however, the freedom we celebrate today is the freedom to worship God and to live according to the direction God points out to us.  In creating us, God gifted us with free will.  God respects our freedom, never compelling us to serve him.  Nevertheless, the Commandments he gives are a most certain way to happiness both in this life and in the eternal life to come.  How we spend our eternity, then, will depend on how we used this gift of freedom.  Did we respect it in ourselves, using our freedom to serve God and others, or did we abuse this gift and take it for granted?

As we celebrate Independence Day with picnics, firecrackers and fireworks, let’s remember that some Americans face firecrackers and fireworks of a far different kind — our young men and women fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.  These fine souls are fighting for something that, sadly, many Americans take for granted and disrespect.  Let us lift them up in prayer this day and every day.  Especially those who lost their lives for this cause.

I wish everyone a very happy, blessed and safe Holiday weekend.  Let us remember that true freedom is for doing what God wants because He knows what is best for us.