I was recently in Boston, Massachusetts and I couldn’t help but think about the history of America and how our country came to be. If you’ve ever traveled to this beautiful city, you’ll know that its steeped in history. As I walked through Boston Commons, the Public Gardens and then down Commonwealth Avenue, I stopped to look at the statues of all the people that fought for a vision of America that so many take for granted.
Have you ever stopped on Independence Day to think about what our lives would be like if we hadn’t gained our independence from Great Britain? Independence Day, or July 4th as we know it in America, was the date that the Declaration of Independence was adopted and the thirteen British colonies in North America declared independence. You may think that our lives would be very much the same if we were still part of the British Commonwealth and you may be right. We will never know; although, I have read some interesting articles about how this momentous event has shaped the world as we know it today and what the world might be like if it hadn’t happened.
Regardless, all of this has me feeling a strong sense of gratitude to be living in a free country. Freedom was one of the driving forces to fight for independence from Britain. I think about people in many other countries today that don’t experience the same level of freedom that we do. They don’t have freedom to speak openly, they don’t have freedom to watch what they want on television, they don’t have freedom to play sports, they don’t have freedom to choose their career path or they don’t have freedom to travel around the world. This is what causes me to stop and to feel intense gratitude for living in America.
I feel that all too often we get wrapped up in the day-to-day and lose sight of all the blessings we experience as Americans. Life isn’t perfect for any of us, but what would shift in your life if you focused on being grateful each day starting with our freedom?
Over the years, freedom has been threatened. Many brave men and women of the US Armed Forces continue to fight for our freedom and to uphold the vision from 1776. As we celebrate Independence Day, I encourage you to pause and express gratitude to those individuals and for all that we have in our lives.
Happy Independence Day America!