Thursday, July 5, 2012

Hundreds of Degrees & My Declaration of Dependence

Okay so the greater Chicagoland area is in it's third straight 100+ degree day. That doesn't count last Thursday when it was 103, or factor in the heat index, which adds the 70-90% humidity we enjoy here in the midwest.

The A/C went out in my husband's car two days ago and the poor man has been commuting 60 miles round trip every day with the windows down. When he gets home we hand him a beach towel.

This is abnormal hot. It feels, in a word...oppressive.

I looked up the definition of oppressive to see if I'm describing it fairly.


1.Unjustly inflicting hardship and constraint.
2.Weighing heavily on the mind or spirits; causing depression or discomfort.

Yeah, that seems about right.

I wondered when the oppression would lift (ironically I was wondering this on the 4th of July). For the first time in I-can't-remember-when we did not go to a parade. My daughter Maggie gets seriously flushed anytime it's in the high 80's or hotter, so between that, being invited to two other places, wanting to see Dan's dad at Rehab and the village not funding the parade because everyone and their brother owes millions of dollars in pension money, we decided to skip it. But it was still hard not to go.

Because I love parades and the 4th of July is my favorite holiday. My husband was in the National Guard for 22 years and I have the utmost respect and appreciation for the men and women who have fought for our freedom. I love that this holiday falls early in July when it's full-fledged summer and families get together for BBQ's, picnics and firework displays. I know there are worthier holidays for glorifying Christ but I can honestly say I am reminded of many Biblical truths on Independence Day.

Freedom is the obvious one. And that's a biggie. The sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross freed those who place their faith in Him from the power and slavery of sin. That isn't to say those who believe in Him don't sin anymore, but it is very good news to know we are free from it's shackles (Romans 6 & 8).

"For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1

But paradoxically, what I am reminded of even more than my freedom is the exact opposite of the name of the day.

I am reminded of my complete and utter dependence on God.

My daughter's first concert was at one of our church's campuses - the band was called Starfield and they have a song that's lyrics are stamped on a t-shirt she bought that night. It's called "Declaration of Dependence."

This is my heart’s condition
This world has ammunition
To tear me down
And steal my life away

I know there’s more than this
More than temptations kiss
So lift me up
And give me strength to stand

I will live
I will live for you

I’ve had a revelation
This is my declaration
More of You, oh God, and less of me

‘Cause You are my new existence
I offer no resistance
I’m running to the One I know I need

How could I walk away
How could I walk away
How could I walk away

I’ll never walk away from You

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