Today is Independence Day in the United States. Many people celebrate this day with cookouts and fireworks. Both of which are perfectly fine, but for me it is a day of reflection. A day of gratefulness for the men who founded this country and their courage of conviction. Knowing what we know about the founders now, they were flawed men not deserving of the perfection many history books paint them in. The founders were real people with shortcomings and problems just like the rest of us. I like studying them better knowing that to be honest.
Benjamin Franklin was asked leaving the Constitutional Convention what kind of government the delegates had agreed on. His response: “A Republic if you can keep it.” The American Experiment, as the Founders referred to it, is remarkable and history making. This quote always makes me reflect because he and the rest of the founders knew: democracy is not a spectator sport. To make the democratic republic of the US thrive requires all of us being actively involved, daily.
I am not just talking about voting here. Yes, that is vital, but go read about what is going on in your local community, too. Raise your voice and use your gifts to make your local community more vibrant and better. Do not wait for someone else to meet a need in your community. Be the one who brainstorms how best to get that need met, and then follow through with the plan you dreamed up. This country is special because of the convictions, spirit, dreams, and potential of her people. We should not ever forget the potential each of us has to make this country and the world better, daily.