As I was going through an old box of papers I came across a persuasive paper that I typed (yes, with a typewriter!) in college that was written prior to the celebration of the bi-centennial of our nation. The title of my paper was “1776-1976: The Extinction of Patriotism.” While some of the points made in the paper are indicative of the time period, many are timeless. I laughed when I read the first line of the paper: “Radio waves, enormous jets, speeding automobiles, even radar ranges are taken for granted by each of us every day.” Radar ranges? Many young people do not even know about the first “microwaves” being called radar ranges. Time has moved with a fast clip. With the onset of computers, the conveniences of life change minute by minute.
During the last week we have been able to watch the summer Olympics. Reports have indicated that these Olympics have had the a very low audience (TV/streaming). Why the disinterest? Our country is disjointed. We are in a tug of war with everyone taking a side. The truth changes on a daily basis. People make “mistakes” instead of having any accountability for wrongdoing. We quickly throw others under the bus to be trounced upon. Our rights supersede the rights of others. Holidays take on new secular meanings. The 4th of July is a time for fireworks, not celebrating our freedom as a nation. Thanksgiving is about gorging ourselves around the table instead of reflecting on our country’s beginning.
We are writing our personal history as well as our country’s history every day. What does that history book look like? Is is ugly and smeared with hate or is it one that is filled with honor because of lives well- lived and freedoms fought for others? Many call the Bible a history book. There is a tremendous amount of history contained in the Bible. There are tales of slavery. There are stories about crime and punishment. There are reports of the rise and fall of kingdoms. However, there are also chronicles about redemption and forgiveness. There are testimonies of freedom and grace. There are romances told for the ages. But most importantly there is an account of the One who laid His life aside for us. No political agenda. No self-seeking intentions. No fireworks. Just sacrificial love. It’s all about love. Putting ourself aside results in the ultimate freedom for others.