Independence Day

Today is the 4th of July. Many Americans, although they welcome the holiday, do not understand the significance of this day!

In a letter dated July 3, 1776, from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he was participating in the Second Continental Congress, John Adams, the future second President of the United States, wrote to his wife Abigail Smith Adams at their home in Braintree, Massachusetts:

Yesterday the greatest Question was decided, which ever was debated in America, and a greater perhaps, never was or will be decided among Men. A Resolution was passed without one dissenting Colony ‘that these united Colonies, are, and of right ought to be free and independent States, and as such, they have, and of Right ought to have full Power to make War, conclude Peace, establish Commerce, and to do all the other Acts and Things, which other States may rightfully do.’ You will see in a few days a Declaration setting forth the Causes which have impell’d Us to this mighty Revolution, and the Reasons which will justify it in the Sight of God and Man. A Plan of Confederation will be taken up in a few days.

In another letter dated July 3, 1776 to Abigail, John wrote:

The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.- I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by Solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfire and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

The 4th of July is the day we celebrate the Festival of which John Adams spoke in 1776.

We have certainly mastered the parades, games, and fireworks, but I wonder if we haven’t lost sight of the real meaning of what we celebrate today.

Let me give you just one example of what I fear has taken place time and again across this great country.

We attended a parade in downtown Breckenridge, CO today. It was two hours long. It included fire trucks, belly dancers (yes belly dancers!), sports cars, business entries, horses, the Republican Party, the Democrat Party, bicyclists, clowns, antique cars, the Green Party, protestors, and family reunions. But with only token references to the Red, White, and Blue and only one or two references to our country and what the 4th stands for.

This was in sharp contrast to the 4th of July parades that we had in OKC in the 70’s when my father-in-law, Garman Kimmell, was the Chairman of the Parade Committee. Those parades were full of the true meaning of the 4th of July. I grieve to think of the change that is taking place in our society.

You can help restore the appropriate significance to the 4th of July.

  1. Tell your children that this nation was founded by Christians and it’s basis is the Holy Bible.
  2. Tell them about the three great documents upon which our nation was founded, the Magna Carta, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution of the United States.
  3. Tell them that this is not a country started by revolutionaries, but that England declared war on the thirteen colonies about a year before the Declaration of Independence.
  4. Tell them that they can and should be proud of our founding fathers.
  5. Tell them that we must be continually vigilant if we are to remain free.
  6. Tell them that this is a Republic, not a Democracy, and tell them the difference.
  7. And tell them they can be proud of the hundreds of thousands of men and women that have fought and died and those that continue to fight and die today for the freedom they enjoy.
  8. Tell them it is a gift from God, but it is our responsibility to retain the gift.

God Bless America!

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