"When in the Course of human Events, it becomes necessary for one People to dissolve the Political Bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the Powers of the Earth, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent Respect to the Opinions of Mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the Separation...."
So began the birth announcement of a brand-new nation, born in the early days of July, 1776. It was not a time for baby-countries; the "Powers of the Earth" receiving the announcement were both scandalized and outraged.
"Of all the nerve!" they cried in great derision, "To be so openly affronted with such audacity and pride! For this imbecile-infant to believe she ranks with us! She shall not last an instant, she knows so little of the world. Her inexperience shall be her undoing; her very existence is a nuisance - and we will squelch this 'little' life!"
"But God has chosen the foolish things of the world to put to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to put to shame the things which are mighty;" - I Corinthians 1:27
The great, proud Powers were unable to succeed in their mission. Spurning all dark prophecies that the country could not last, defiant of all powers who planned and plotted its demise, the great fathers and mothers of the new baby-nation were men and women willing to envision ambitiously, create painstakingly, and sacrifice limitlessly. For their children who would follow, these brave parents lead the way - examples of dedication, self-denial, and - most importantly - faith in the one, true King. No cost was too high a price to bring into the world this young nation. A nation who would, in turn, guard and protect the lives and faiths of those to come.
"I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history and naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture, in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain." - John Adams
And as they signed that solemn announcement, to the soft scratch of pen on paper, the fathers knew all they would be called upon to lay down for this, their new, small child. Families, occupations, lands, houses, and lives - they counted the cost, and knew it well. Yet, emboldened by their faith in Christ, confident that they were doing right, the signed their names below these words:
"We, therefore, the Representatives of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the World for the Rectitude of our Intentions, do, in the Name, and by the Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly Publish and Declare , That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES....And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor."
And a new nation was born.
Happy Birthday, America.