Recently while traveling I noticed several fireworks stands beside the road. We are getting ready to celebrate Independence Day and our 233 birthday. I noticed some small children playing around one of the stands. Those children were enjoying the freedoms that others fought and died for. We have the freedom to celebrate the holiday in the way we choose. There may be parades, picnics, ballgames, fireworks, family and friend’s get-togethers and outings. This great country was founded on the idea that men and women should be free and should have some basic rights and freedoms. Like freedom from other governments, freedom from the tyranny of our government and freedom of religion. Men and women fought and died so we could have these freedoms. In addition, our troops are in various parts of the world today trying to preserve and protect the freedoms of others and let us not forget them. I am also reminded of an even greater freedom that was made available to us many years ago when Christ gave His life for us, (John 8:36 & Romans 5:8). So we could have forgiveness from our sins, (Acts 10:43 & Ephesians 1:7) and the hope of a new life and a new future, (Romans 6:23 & Hebrews 10:16-23). Let us remember these two great events this holiday and the people that made these freedoms available to us. See you in Church next Sunday.