Looking back at the Fourth of July

The U.S.A. celebrated the Fourth of July this week – a holiday known for cook-outs, pool parties, and fireworks. This is our nation’s Independence Day! We gain value from the past when we not only reflect and remember, but when we also put into practice the lessons learned. Here are a few tidbits of history to guide your thought, prayer, and reflection today:

  • July 4, 1776 is the root of our current holiday, but the Revolutionary War lasted another five years and the U.S.A. was not really independent and free until 1783. The fight was long and bloody, but these early Americans persevered because the goal was worthy. What goals and values in life are you willing to fight for and to defend?
  • Did you know that the colors on the American flag each symbolize something? Red is for valor and bravery, white is for purity and innocence, and blue is for vigilance, perseverance, and justice. These are important qualities and values for each of us to live by. What are the qualities and values that you consider most important in your life? How do you engage in specific actions or lifestyle choices in order to display these values for all to see?
  • There are many Christian hymns that beseech God to bless America or that otherwise merge our faith and our patriotism. It good to honor and defend our nation, but if you are a Christian, reflect also on the fact that the Lord’s Table is a multinational one, defended throughout history and time and bought with the blood of Christ. Our first and foremost identity is in Christ and his worldwide church. How do you engage with believers from other nations? Prayer, friendship, missions, and encouragement are all important.