#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller

Independence Day

Today, let us celebrate the gift of Freedom.
Who gave us this gift?
Well, inititally, God. He planted the yearning in our hearts long ago.
But after God came others, who spoke up in spite of their fear.
They framed the Constitution.
They fought and died to establish, sustain and preserve the great gift.
Do we truly have Liberty and Justice for all?
We’ve got work to do. Fortunately, we don’t have to be perfect at it.
We must tend our own gardens. We must practice compassion. We must open our hearts and our minds to the cries of others. We must value those who take the opposite view, for without them, there would be no balance.
Let us remember:
The forgotten child, in the inner city.
The mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, grieving for that fallen soldier.
The people who are–gasp–DIFFERENT. (Remember that guy I mentioned yesterday, the one with the shopping cart, who lives under the freeway, and beams as he begs?)
We must make room for everyone to stand proudly inside the circle defined as ‘us’. (Or U.S., if you will.)
We are far from that goal, and yet I feel great hope for this nation, and all free nations. (If you don’t believe we’re really free, try spending a day in Afganistan or Iraq; you’ll soon see the difference.)
What shall we do?
Remember the code, inspired by God.
Liberty and Justice for all.
We shall keep marching. We shall keep trying. Keep hoping and praying.
You see, it’s not the destination that matters so much. It’s the journey.
Let us travel with integrity, with courage, with fairness of mind.
Let us seek the Light. It will lead us.

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