My husband and I were looking for covered bridges in Bennington, Vermont, when we happened on an impressive monument dedicated to a Revolutionary War general. Memorials like this are scattered throughout New England, the birthplace of our nation’s freedom.
The inscription on the plaque read:
Although it wasn’t the official designation, I named this impressive monument Finding Freedom.
We assume great military officials like General Stark will be masterful strategists and inspiring leaders. I believe God is also strategic, and words recorded in the Bible inspire those who pay attention.
Events happening in our everyday lives or words we hear from scripture may seem coincidental, but I wonder. Might they really be divine interventions and inspiration meant to help us find the freedom our soul craves?
Many months ago, as I was reading the letter the Apostle Paul wrote to his friends in Galatia, a certain verse stuck to my soul like one of those kids’ Velcro toys stick to whatever surface the manufacturer provides.
Throughout our time in New England, Galatians 5:1 often returned to my thoughts.
The Passion Bible translates Paul’s words like this:
Let me be clear, the Anointed One [Jesus] has set us free—not partially, but completely and wonderfully free! We must always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back into the bondage of our past.
As I read General Stark’s message urging his soldiers to ‘stubbornly refuse’ to submit to bondage, that message seemed to fit with the one Paul delivered to his friends
Our country was built by men and women who desired freedom from religious oppression, excessive taxation, lack of opportunity, tyrannical government, and even the same old, same old ways of doing life. Mistakes were made, and injustices occurred in the process of our nation being established.
The pursuit of freedom often begins with a noble, cherished truth, but along the way, flawed humans err. I’m so thankful that because of God’s love, failures can serve as a dark backdrop on which the jewels of God’s mercy and grace shine brightly.
I hope you’ll enjoy the following photos, all of which depict aspects of freedom for which our forefathers and foremothers longed and fought.
The Old North Church is the oldest standing church in the City of Boston. It was made famous by Paul Revere’s midnight ride, immortalized by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, which you may remember began:
Listen my children, and you will hear of the midnight ride of Paul Revere
From the steeple of the North Church, two lanterns hung, warning when the British were leaving Boston: “One if by land, two if by sea.”
The USS Constitution, known as ‘Old Ironsides, was used in the War of 1812. The stately wooden ship still sits in Boston Harbor. That tall, pointed tower in the background is The Bunker Hill Monument.
Fort McClary, Kittery Point, Maine, built in 1808, was a military site used for defensive fortification.
Bondage comes in forms other than oppression caused by political environments. If there’s a bondage with which you struggle, a freedom for which you long, I hope these scenes from history as well as encouragement found in words of scripture will help you dig in your heels of faith and find courage to persevere and win whatever battle you’ve been called to fight.
I’m praying for you…