It's the 4th of July! One of the things that is great about living in New Hampshire, New England as a whole, and Wolfeboro especially is that Independence Day is a big deal. Driving into town this week you will be greeted by more American flags in a 3 mile stretch of main street than you will see driving through entire cities in other parts of the country. Patriotism may not be what it once was in America as a whole, but here it's still thriving. In some ways its the religion of New England. For many New Englanders, it's what they do to get outside of themselves and their individual lives to be a part of something bigger...something greater. Of course, it's also an important day because of what we celebrate it for: Freedom. Liberty. Independence from tyranny.
The human being craves freedom. The famous philosopher, Jean-Jacque Rousseau, said "Man is born free and everywhere is in chains". The Bible would take issue with the first part of Rousseau's statement. Man is not born free. Man was created free. When Adam and Eve, the first human beings, were first walking the earth, they were as free as humanity can ever be. They were free to experience almost all that God had created. I say "almost all" because there was a limit. There was a boundary. Boundaries are necessary. Adam and Eve were independent from a tyrannical government, independent from worldly authority and abuse. But they were not independent from God. Quite the opposite. They were completely DE-pendent on God for everything. It was a beautiful and perfect dependence. It's the type of dependence that all of humanity lost when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and unknowingly became independent from Him too. An independence that caused the greatest human catastrophe of all time - The Fall.
You see, we were created to be free. But we were not created to be independent. You and I have been given one great choice every day, in every life, and it is this: Who or what will I be dependent on? If we are not dependent upon God then we will be dependent upon man or some sort of human agency or human government. The greatest reality about Independence Day. The most critical freedom that America was founded on was just that. To be free to choose to be dependent on God. We still have that freedom in America. We can still choose to be dependent on God in almost every way. Let's celebrate that freedom today, this weekend and as often as we can. How do we celebrate it best? By living it out. By living in dependence upon God, "the giver of all good things"!
Have a blessed Independence Weekend and we hope to see you Saturday night, July 5th at 6pm for worship and the continuation of our study, HIStory - The Scarlet Thread.