It’s July Fourth, 2017. I had planned to just rest this day, not make a big deal out of anything. This morning when I got out of bed, I was moved to make a trip to Wal-Mart. Not burning up some hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill just didn’t seem right. Though things in the country are out of kilter, I can’t let that deter me from celebrating the 241st birthday of our country. The late author, Alex Haley was known to say, “Find the good and praise it.” With that phrase in mind, I found myself thinking of all I’ve been blessed to experience in America during my sixty-six years of life. Although politically and socially my country is going through a period of dissonance, there is still an overwhelming amount of positivity in our nation.
When I consider just a few facts: 1) I’m a long-term cancer survivor; 2) I was born into poverty, and I’m a product of an educational system that prepared me-with God’s grace- to lift myself out of that state; 3) I have family that loves me; 4) I have lived a productive life over the last seventeen years as a Multiple Myeloma patient, and 5) I have hope for the future. There are so many more things I could list; however, the point is that I really don’t have to look very hard to find the good that has been a part of my three score and almost seven. As I write this piece, I’m basking in the joy that came from watching my family eat the food I prepared for this day. We didn’t eat anything fancy, just hot dogs, burgers and a few chicken drumsticks. I added a bit of cole slaw, baked beans and potato salad to round out the spread. As I said nothing fancy, just some basic food stuffs with the family. It wasn’t hard to find the good in the experience of this day. Blessing are wonderful and even more so when you acknowledge them.
Birthdays provide an opportunity to celebrate; an opportunity that shouldn’t be passed up. July Fourth is the day we celebrate the birth of our nation; it’s also an opportunity to look around at all God has provided. A personal survey of what you’ve received in sacrifices made by others in service to our country; of how you’re still alive given all you’ve gone through, and the hope for a brighter future, make it easy to celebrate our nation’s birth. God bless America!
I’m old and blessed and I hope you will be too.