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July 4, 2020

“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known.” 1 Corinthians 13:2

I’ve never been a big fan of fireworks, and I truly don’t enjoy how folks set them off throughout the whole summer these days. But last night was July 3, and there was going to be a fireworks display near where we’re staying right now. So, we walked to where we could watch, found a spot a good twenty feet from the nearest people, and waited. By 9:00, the display still hadn’t started and the boys were exhausted. The three of us headed for home.

Of course, the fireworks started minutes after we left. We didn’t go back to watch. Instead, we stood for a few moments and looked through the trees to see a very partial view of some fireworks. I thought the boys would be disappointed. Instead they said, “We got to see fireworks!” The loud ruckus continuing, I walked them home, tucked them in bed, said prayers, and sang to them until they fell asleep.

Today is July 4, the birthday of our nation. Like fireworks seen through the forest, we have only glimpsed what we can be. As Miranda’s Hamilton sings, America is a “great unfinished symphony.” This year the Fourth feels different. Many of us are more mindful than ever that there’s a lot about our history not worth celebrating. Certainly there is much to celebrate, but there is also much to mourn and overcome. So, mindful of past and present, I will look to my favorite part of America’s history: the future.

May each next year be better than the one before. May God mold us into the people God created us to be. That would be a display to behold; may we see this vision more and more clearly.

Be well, friends. You are loved.

God of the nations, you give us glimpses of your Kingdom to inspire our living in this world. Help us to see you more fully, that we may more fully live out your will. Bless our country, and all countries, with peace, justice, and opportunity for all. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Image: Fireworks that I didn’t see last night; photo by Erika Lyle.

From → COVID-19

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