Fourth of July!  If ever there is a summer celebration, it is this day when patriotism, vacations, and perfect outdoor weather coincide.  I’ll do my walk early this morning to avoid crowded roads and beaches.  The air will be ripe with the scent of hamburgers and hot dogs grilling, steaks over hot coals, damp potato chips and coleslaw.  I’ll hear children squealing in the surf, throwing bits of bun to seagulls, shouting as they run up and down the beach.  Tonight there will be fireworks that split the darkness and shower sparks of living color.  So much to celebrate, so many reasons to be grateful.  We are a free country, a freedom dearly bought and purchased with the death and sacrifices of those who defended her.  In the same way, I am free from sin and the permanence of death, a freedom purchased by the blood and death of Jesus Christ.  What reason to celebrate!  Lord, I come to your Sacramental Table to remember your sacrifice and to honor the anniversary of this occasion.  Please help me never forget my reason to celebrate freedom and the price you paid.

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