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Letter: Stand up for freedom

Published: Thursday, July 4, 2013 5:30 a.m. CDT

Fireworks! Veterans! Honor, thanksgiving, sorrow, pain, bitterness, hostility, joy – so many choices and emotions represent us right now. We’ve recently celebrated our veterans and our flag, and we now reflect on our heritage.

We love to celebrate the Fourth of July with picnics, parades and fireworks. But do we remember why we are celebrating? Looking back to 1776, where would we be had there not been the revolution? Do we recall our history, our nation’s heritage or do we understand the significance of our Constitution?

The founders of our country came from a varied background. Some were wealthy land owners, others farmed the land.

Some were leaders, others followed.

All demonstrated bravery when they fixed their name on a document declaring their freedom. They didn’t hide in the shadows. They proclaimed their beliefs and boldly stood behind their signatures. Their heroic actions speak to each of us today, reminding us to stand up for freedom.

True freedom is discussed in God’s word. Remember Jesus himself died to free us from bondage. All who have experienced addiction or rejection, overpowering grief, anger or fear know how it feels to live on the other side. Do you want to be free? Jesus is the truth that sets us free. Do we cling to Jesus and choose to follow in His footsteps?

Trust is an essential choice. When we live a life of prayer, knowing we have a faithful creator, we discover that we are free. Free to be the unique and loving people of God’s design. Instead of trying hard to follow a religion, we enjoy an amazing, mutual relationship with our Lord. We live our days in His hope as we trust and praise Him.

As our Founding Fathers opened the door to our independence, Jesus opened the way to our freedom. Speak up for America. Choose to be thankful. Pray. Celebrate life. Pass on hope and encourage others. Love and forgive.

Trust God as you celebrate freedom, not only on this Fourth of July, but all year long.

Nancy Kapple Stoppelkamp

Graham, N.C., and formerly of Geneva

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