The American Flag was proudly displayed on his front porch. As we ate our traditional hamburgers and hotdogs we also had flags on the table as our centerpiece. Red, white, blue. A celebration of our country, one founded on Christian principles and as recent as 1956 President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a law that made the phrase “In God we trust” the official motto of our country.
I saw the tears well up in his eyes later in the evening . . . two days shy of his 90thBirthday. Anchors Aweigh was being sung as we watched a tribute to the Armed Forces on a special TV program for the Fourth of July. I can only image the surge of emotions and memories that washed over my father-in-law as he went back in time to his days in the Navy.
Thanks to him, and many others, we have freedom in this country but it came with a price. There is another freedom we can experience that also came with a price.
Thanks to Jesus, and Him only, we can be free of sin if we accept what He did on the cross for us. But the freedom He offers isn’t only for our country, but for the world. For the Bible say, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16).
A Navy man who has long lost the feel of the sea in his legs still sheds a tear as remembers his days in service and the honor that he feels for the time given to his country to secure her freedom.
As we move away from the Birthday of our nation and all the fireworks and cookouts, may we not only remember and thank the men and women — like my father-in-law — for what they gave for our freedom, but Jesus Christ for what He gave for our ultimate freedom.