Happy 232nd Birthday, United States of America!!
As we go about our day of cookouts & fireworks, it is my hope that each of us will take some time to reflect on just how sweet our freedoms are in America and about the sacrifice that so many before us have made.. as well as all those men & women who are currently serving our country right now. "And the rocket's red glare.. the bombs bursting in air".. those are very real things to so many who have marched into battlefields here & abroad.
We've been doing a lot of talking in our family of late about our ancestors (partially brought about by our recent family reunion & my cousin compiling an awesome book on our family tree, too).
My Great-great-great-great Grandfather, Jonah Scroggins enlisted two seperate times (once as a private & later as a sergeant) and fought in the Revolutionary War to free our country from English rule. How cool to think that he was their to witness firsthand the birth of our nation. He also lived through the presidential terms of : George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, John Quincy Adams, Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren and John Tyler. Just think about all of the history that he witnessed in his lifetime!
I also have a Great-great-great Grandfather, Thomas Riley Gilleland fought for the Union Army during the Civil War.. and served as a guard at the penitentiary in Alton, IL. (there is still a small portion of one wall standing here in town). We put flowers & flags on their graves every Memorial Day weekend.. to carry on the tradition of earlier generations & keep promises that we made to them to never forget about what our forefathers did for our country. I also have many cousins who proudly served our country during World War II & Vietnam, too.
So.. today I salute all the amazing men in my family who have sacrificed for our freedoms. May we take their lead & stand up for what our country was originally founded upon. I pray that you will have a wonderful 4th of July & remember to take some time out to reflect on how very blessed we are to live in America!