Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!
2 Serve the Lord with gladness;
Come before His presence with singing.
3 Know that the Lord, He is God;
It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
And into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him, and bless His name.
5 For the Lord is good;
His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.
Psalm 100 (NKJV)
GIVING THANKS FOR THE BLESSING OF FREEDOM
“I’ll take a couple of teacher work days so you won’t have to homeschool,” Leigh said as we began to plan our time with the boys.
“But won’t that put your teaching schedule behind?” I asked. “Yes, some, but it will be easier to catch up than it will be to lug everything over there for just one night,” she shared. My mind started spinning. “What if I take them on educational field trips those days,” I queried.
The deal made, I got off the phone and onto the Internet. We live in the Greensboro, NC, area, the location of the famous 1781 Revolutionary war battle for Guilford County Courthouse. The battle, though lost, was crucial in winning our independence and freedom just seven months later. With elections so close, I thought a trip to the Battleground, our Town Hall, and to the Voting Polls, and the Pumpkin Patch, was in order. History, Civics, Agricultural Science, Reading and Bible would dominate our lesson plan.
October 18th finally arrived, along with two very excited and rambunctious boys—and Sadie, one very large dog-pony. The 140 pound Great Dane loves to come to Nana’s house with the boys! She brings her own bed with her—a crib mattress for heaven’s sake!
After a breakfast of Mickey Mouse pancakes, a tradition at Nana’s house, we loaded into the car and set off on our adventure.
As Asher and Mason set their own feet on the actual battleground site where our forefathers fought and died, we read the Declaration of Independence and about the tyranny that brought it about. We saw pictures of and read stories about the men who fought for that independence.
We saw the artifacts, actual surgical tools, and documentary films. They began to feel as if they were right there with our great-great-great grandfathers, as the muskets sounded and the smoke rose and the men fell in the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom and a new government of the people, by the people and for the people.
As we visited our Town Hall in Jamestown, NC, settled in 1752, 1-year-old Asher said, “Nana, we wouldn’t have the freedom to vote here if all those people hadn’t fought for us and made us a new country.” I watched their faces as their little hearts comprehended that sacrifice and what it had given to them personally.
Then Mason, only seven years old, looked up with worried eyes and said, “Nana, will we have to fight in a war to keep our freedom?”
“Yes grandson, we do have to fight to keep our freedom. We fight by praying for our country and our leaders. That is the most powerful way we can fight. We fight by voting, we fight by being involved in our governmental process.” He smiled and said, “Nana, we can do that!” We remembered our Bible lesson of the day as we remembered Jesus who died for our spiritual freedom, as our forefathers died for our physical freedom.
Thankfully, the heaviness of the day receded as we visited the pumpkin patch where we learned how different plants and veggies grow. We talked about the privilege God gives to us to grow. Just like plants, we start out as seeds with no life, but when Christ plants us in His Kingdom, and waters us with His Word, we grow a little each day to reach spiritual maturity.
“Dear Lord, thank you for the blessing of family and freedom and for your sacrifice that gives us Hope and promise for the future.”
Your traveling Companion,