Faith (and Freedom) on Friday: We Hold These Truths

4th-of-july-tennis_300_263We started our 4th of July with breakfast and Wimbledon. But without the  strawberries and cream. More like a Southern brunch: cinnamon rolls, link sausages, scrambled eggs and mimosas. And tennis. It wasn’t until an hour or two in that it hit me: the irony of celebrating our independence from England while watching Wimbledon.

Lots of folks will celebrate the day with hot dogs and fireworks. We might even walk down to the (Mississippi) river tonight to catch a glimpse of the pyrotechnics right “next door” on Mud Island. But right now my mind is contemplating the reason for all the celebrations. Our freedom.

declaration of independence pictureWhen was the last time you read the Declaration of Independence? I have to admit it’s been many years, decades, perhaps. So today, in honor of the holiday, I’m listening to the reading of that historic document on NPR. (It’s a tradition to have visitors to the National Mall in Washington, D.C. read it aloud.)

Want some Independence Day music to listen to if you’re stuck at home? Here are ten tunes you might enjoy. My favorite is Number 3. (You’ll have to click on the link to find out what it is.) But I also really like this one.

Since this is my usual “Faith on Friday” post, I’ll throw in a couple of quotes from scripture:

“For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh but through love serve one another.”—Holy Apostle Paul (Galatians 5:13)

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”—Holy Apostle John   (John  8:32)

imagesI’m not going to share any opinions about what that last verse means. Instead I’ll close with a few quotes from better-known people. Can you guess who said each of these? I’ll put the answers on Facebook later.

  1. “The truth will set you free, but first it will piss you off.”
  2. “Freedom lies in being bold.”
  3. “Lock up your libraries if you like; but there is no gate, no lock, no bolt that you can set upon the freedom of my mind.”
  4. “He who has overcome his fears will truly be free.”
  5. “The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”
  6. “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”
  7. “I predict future happiness for Americans, if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them.”
  8. “The most important kind of freedom is to be what you really are. You trade in your reality for a role. You trade in your sense for an act. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.”


Fireworks on the Mississippi River near our home here in Memphis
Fireworks on the Mississippi River near our home here in Memphis


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