This last week we celebrated our Independence Day and most of us probably went to the lake or went camping and probably watched some fireworks. I did those things too!  But I also pondered a great deal and experienced heart-felt gratitude for the favorable circumstances in which we live.   A week or so ago I shared my feelings about land ownership and how that epitomizes our freedom here in this country.  

     After I wrote that article about land ownership, I received an email from a new friend who is in a dilemma.  Let’s call him John.  John, if you are reading this, I hope that your circumstances are changing for the better!  John communicated to me the fact that he owns property in a small rural town, but is being barred from accessing it because of his current status with some legal issues related to a lengthy incarceration following a felony conviction.  As I responded to him, I reflected on what really makes us free.  Certainly ownership of land is only a resulting effect of the true freedom that we enjoy in this country!  John, no longer incarcerated, is really not free,…yet. But he is learning and understanding some of the principles related to it as he struggles in his homeless state to gain his freedom.

     The Good Book says, “The truth will make you free.”  I believe that.  We have a system of laws in this country, that when violated causes us to lose our freedom.  So is it the knowledge of and adherence to those laws that make us free from the consequences?  Or is it the knowledge of a higher law?  Our constitution would not work unless we had a people who generally subscribe to a higher law that is not from this earth.  We as a people are so blessed!

      A marketing flier used by the Canadian Red Cross offers perspective:  “If you have food in your fridge, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75% of the world.  If you have money in the bank, your wallet and some spare change, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy.  If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week.  If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the agony of imprisonment or torture or the horrible pangs of starvation, you are luckier than 500 million people alive and suffering.   If you can read this message, you are more fortunate than 3 billion people in the world who cannot read at all. “