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Today we celebrate the birth of our nation and the gift of independence that it affords.  John Hancock was the first to put his name on the declaration.  He signed his name in that beautiful and flowing signature. Legend has it that this was so that King George could read his name without wearing his spectacles.  (My dreams aren’t even written with that elegant of handwriting.)  As he put pen to paper, John Hancock was cementing his place in history.  He was signing his name for freedom, breaking free from tyranny, and setting our great nation on a storied and historic journey.  As we celebrate today, I think it is important to take a moment to remember our history and to reflect as we enjoy some time with family and friends.

John Hancock is an American hero.  He signed his name and began a venture into freedom.  Jesus is big on signatures too.  But, as far as I can tell, Jesus isn’t as concerned about writing His name.  The power of Jesus and the true story of freedom is that Jesus signed your name.  The book of Life shows up in Exodus, in Ezekiel, and in Revelation–among other places.  It contains the names of the faithful.  Jesus put your name in a book–and by His blood you have life.

On this 4th of July, as we celebrate freedom and independence, may we also celebrate and give praise to the One–the only One–who offers true freedom and calls us not to independence–but dependence.  Today my we live in-dependence of the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

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