Last night, the fireworks show begins with a reading of the Declaration of Independence. I'm listening to the voice boom over the loudspeakers across the valley, and I'm deeply aware of the verbs for the first time in my life: dissolve, throw off, absolve.
I'm hearing it again: We totally dissolve this. We will not tolerate this oppression. We will not. We throw it far away from us.
I think of how very thorough the breaking away is. There's no going back.
It's a declaration against what comes against the human spirit. It's a declaration against tyranny. As I sit there in the darkness, I consider my own declarations against that which tyrannizes and comes against everything of God in me. I think about repentance and all the ways I want to turn away from sin and move towards God.
I consider the thorough language of the Declaration of Independence--the great care, the attention to every detail of oppression--and how strong and forceful it becomes. I want to be that thorough when it comes to anything oppressing me and my family and community.
I feel courage rising in me. I feel another call to battle, but this time, thorough. I look at encroaching sin, and I sever ties; I dissolve, throw off, absolve, and declare a new allegiance.
Have you ever not thoroughly turned from sin and seen how it comes back?