Freedom.  It seems appropriate for America’s 243rd birthday tomorrow on the 4th of July.  This great country has weathered countless wars.  We seem to remember the major wars:  The Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Civil War, the Mexican American War, World War I, World War II, Persian Gulf Wars and the War in Afghanistan and many, many Indian Wars.  In the almost two and a half centuries since our great nations was founded, many have sacrificed their lives to keep us a free nation.

Our flag, when flying high and proud, makes us think of those who fought and died so we can have the freedoms listed in our bill of rights.

Sadly, there are those who don’t see our flag as a symbol of patriotism.  They want it banned.  They burn it. But then, they have that right to denigrate our flag because it’s their freedom to do so.  I don’t agree with it but that’s my opinion.

So today I want to celebrate the stars and stripes but most of all I want to thank ALL the veterans of every war who fought and died for my freedom.  Their sacrifice and the sacrifices of their families touch my heart.  May God bless those who serve along with their families and may He bless those who have lost loved ones and are still grieving their loss.  I grieve with you.

So if you see a service member in uniform, whether or not you know that service member, walk up to him or her, thank them for their service.  They are not thanked enough and should be.  My heartfelt thanks on this, America’s 243rd birthday.