I’ll tell you right up front: this is not a political article!
In America, Independence Day is the federal holiday that celebrates the birthday of the United States. On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence, “the nation’s most cherished symbol of liberty,” was signed and declared that the thirteen colonies, and all those after them, had independent freedom from Great Britain.
America’s independence was actually declared by the Continental Congress on July 2. The document was adopted on July 4.
On July 2, John Adams wrote a note to his wife Abigail, saying…
“The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epoch 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 shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”
Though he was off by two days, Adams’ thoughts of celebrating this historical event have continued on since then.
That great document, the Declaration of Independence, begins with…“When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary…” and goes on to say…
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”
As I mulled this over recently, it made me think: has it ever become necessary in the events of our lives to declare our independence from the tyranny of the world and our enemy?
If the answer is yes, and we have accepted God’s free gift of salvation, do we then purposely separate ourselves from the way of the world? Or do we continue in our own way of living, independent of the Lord, living out everyday life as usual, the way it was BC (before Christ)?
Do we remember our “day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty”? In other words, do we remember that historical day of our lives and, therefore, in gratitude, live our lives as a celebration of devotion to God? Or do we forget all about God, His Word, and His Spirit in our everyday lives?
When we accept the Christian life, it brings a new form of government, a new rule, into our lives. It is independence from the world and dependence upon the Lord. But do we place our lives totally in His hands, trusting and depending on Him to have authority over us?
So, what is it for you: do you celebrate your freedom in an Independence Day? Or do you rename it and celebrate your freedom in a Dependence Day?