I realize it’s time to celebrate our Nation’s Birthday.
It’s also time to celebrate mine!
America was born on July 4th, 1776…fighting for religious freedom.
I was Born on the 4th of July… fighting for my life.
Second born of seven children.
Daughter of a mother who took me to church—
taught me about Jesus,
raised me to honor and fear God.
My mother bore witness to this truth:
There is a Redeemer—
*Pierced for my rebellion…
Crushed for my sins
Beaten so I could be whole…
Whipped so I could be healed.
I was daughter of a father who held his babe—
rocked me… sang songs over me…
songs about Jesus.
My father bore witness to this truth—
Jesus is the Redeemer….
*The Lamb of God
who takes away
the sins of the world.
I was Granddaughter of One who modeled
the love of Jesus—
the joy of the Lord.
My grandmother bore witness to this truth…
We love because He loved us first.
Whoever loves God…
I grew up wanting to know God.
Religion without relationship….
I knew about Him, but I did not know Him.
I went to church every time the doors opened.
Sang in the choir—yet afraid of God.
A good girl, tried to keep rules
and traditions of the church—
yet at home I was a rebel.
Scrapping, fighting, and striving for control.
A religious rebel who needed a redeemer—
One to regain possession
of the seed of Adam and Eve
One to rescue from slavery of sin,
One to pay penalty for sin….
One to forgive, restore, and renew.
I needed Jesus—
His body and blood… perfect sacrifice.
His death, resurrection, and ascension…
made heaven possible.
His Spirit descended—
His Seed implanted.
New birth— born again!
He lives as Advocate—
Slow to anger
Full of loving kindness
Mercy and truth —
Pleading on our behalf before God.
I want to bear witness to this truth—
I have been saved by grace, *a gift extended,
Trusting in the name of Jesus—
atoning blood and sacrifice;
turning and repenting from sin.
Trusting in perfect Lamb of God.
*Reflections from Isaiah 53; John 1, 3, Ephesians 2, 1 John 4