Hey, everyone! I hope you're having an amazing Independence day so far! :D I was planing on writing a poem and posting it, but. . .I couldn't seem to get any of the words to rhyme. ;) So, I wrote a short story instead. I wanted to capture the reason our Nation has been great. Just remember, our freedom came at a price, it wasn't free. Freedom is never free. We owe a debt of gratitude to everyone who has died for our country and everyone who is serving our country.
I hope y'all are having an amazing 4th!
I hope y'all are having an amazing 4th!
“Grandpa, Grandpa. I want to see that one!” Eleven-year old Sam pointed across the Arlington cemetery to the Marine Corps memorial that stood tall and silent, flag flying proudly in the breeze.
The Grandpa smiled, “Alright, we’ll go and see that one next.”
Sam slipped his hand into his Grandpa’s and they began to slowly walk across the large cemetery.
“Grandpa, why are there so many crosses? So many graves?” the boy asked, glancing at his Grandfather with a questioning look.
“Those, my boy, are all the men who have died for our flag.”
“But Grandpa, why would they die for a flag? It seems silly.”
“Oh, Sam, you want to know why they would die for our flag? Let me tell you. When our forefathers declared their independence, we become the first nation that had a government of the people, by the people and for the people. Do you know why that was so important, Sam?”
He shook his head, “Why Grandpa?”
“Because that meant that no longer would there be a king or a dictator telling people what they should do and shouldn't do. They were free to govern themselves and to elect the leaders they thought would be best for our great country. And, most importantly, America had freedom of religion.”
“But, Grandpa, I thought that being free meant there were no rules and you could do whatever we wanted. There are still rules in America.”
“The Grandpa smiled, “I’m glad your so inquisitive, Sam. Yes, being free means you can do what you believe best, but there are also laws that are needed to protect our freedom. I mean, would you feel free if you knew someone could kill you simply because they thought it would be best?”
Sam shook his head, “That would make me scared.”
“That’s right. So, to protect our freedoms, we have laws. The laws should never tell us what to believe or how we must live, but laws are guidelines made for your protection. Sam, freedom is the ability to listen to your conscience, It doesn’t give you a free ticket to sin. It’s just like how Jesus dies for us. He forgives all our sin if we ask him to, but does that mean we should keep on sinning?”
Sam shook his head, “No, because that would make Jesus sad.”
“That's right. When we love someone we don’t want to do anything that would hurt them. The same is true for our country. If we truly love ‘The land of the free and the home of the brave,’ we won’t do anything that could hurt it or tear it down. We’ll realize that the laws that are in place are meant to preserve our freedom. When our founding fathers established the country, the laws they governed it by were the same laws and rules that are found in God’s Holy Word. That’s what truly made our country great. But,” a sad look entered the Grandpa's eyes, “We are turning away from those laws in our country. People who haven’t been taught why America is great and haven’t been taught the Bible and don’t know the real meaning of freedom are trying to make their own laws. If we aren’t careful, their laws will destroy our country. We need to pray that God can show them what freedom really is. Freedom in His Son is the true freedom. And we need to be a witness through how we live. We need to show them what true freedom looks like.”
“Why did you fight for our country, Grandpa?” Sam wondered.
“I fought for our freedom. I fought so that you can be free to make decisions, Sam. I fought so that you can choose who to serve. I fought to give you the freedom to choose.”
“So, even if I chose to do things you don’t like, you fought for that?”
The Grandpa chuckled, “I certainly hope you chose to do right, but, yes, I fought that you could have a free choice. But we must remember, whatever choice you personally make is yours alone. You can not try and force it on others. They must make their own choice, they are free to make their own choice. And they do have the right to make their own choice.”
“But, Grandpa, what about the flag? You said the men died for the flag.”
“They did. The flag stand for everything I've been explaining for you. Our glorious flag stands for freedom, liberty and justice for all. It stands for the freedom to make your own personal choice. It stands for America.”
By this time they had reached the Marine Corps memorial and Sam gazed up at the flag, “Is that why these men were trying to keep the flag up?”
“Yes, my boy. The flag must never be dishonored, must never be allowed to touch the ground. they loved America. They were fighting to keep us free.”
Sam thought for a moment, “I love our flag, Grandpa.”
The Grandpa smiled, “So do I, Sam. So do I.”
Oh say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave, O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?