Hey there Readers, Happy (belated) 4th of July!
We’ve had a busy few days over here, as we have visitors at the farm once again- Ba and Nana (my in laws)- and we’ve had plenty of adventure since they arrived on the 1st of July. But because yesterday was the day we celebrated our independence as a Nation, I figured we should take a moment to really just dive into that for a hot second. Freedom and independence are two HUGE things that Thomas and I cherish in our lives, and two things I think a lot of us take for granted in this country.
For one, I have the freedom to say things like that, right? That’s important to me. I have the freedom to write this blog and share my perspective with y’all- regardless of how relevant or contrary it may be to someone else. I have the freedom to write about faith and God, because in this country we get to believe in God! Or not believe in God! It’s our choice, our freedom- what a blessing. We have the complete freedom of independent thought and we get to decide what we believe to be true or not true. Do you guys get that, for one, that’s not the case everywhere- a lot of people are force fed what they’re allowed to believe and practice. For goodness sake, figure out what you believe and guard that! And two, I think it’s safe to say that a lot of us have forgotten that we are allowed to exercise our right to THINK independently and BE independent in this country.
Go with me for a second as I generalize here… we forget that we’re allowed to think outside the box. We don’t have to accept what the media hands us as truth. We get to independently think, and then exercise our freedom to disagree or sift through the stories. We get to discuss openly about politics and religion. Yes, I get that those topics are generally taboo, but why? We are free to disagree! We are free to learn from one another. We are free to… wait for it… gain new perspectives. I know I exercise this freedom all the time!
We’re also free to chase down our independent dreams in this life. My goodness, is this something that Thomas and I cherish so very much. We got a lot of flack when we decided Thomas was going to leave the fire service. People didn’t understand. They thought it was stupid. They actually even were disrespectful about it and still talk badly about him for the decision. That’s their right! But it’s our right to have an independent goal for our family.
We faced more misunderstanding when we up and moved across the country. I’ve stood in front of friends who cock their head at me as I try to explain why on the actual earth we wouldn’t want to live in a city environment. But thank the God above (and the men who have fought to keep our country this way) that we have the freedom to do life our way. We aren’t forced into other people’s boxes. We get to chase down whatever kind of dream God puts on our hearts! Can I get a hallelujah?!
We also have the freedom to live independently. That’s a big part of our move here to Shalom Farm. We want to be able to support ourselves entirely. We want to get to a point where, if we had to, we could survive without outside help or assistance. Not that we’re trying to live off grid, but we’d like to get to a place where we’re able to be that independent. Because here’s the deal Readers… you have the freedom to NOT give up your independence. I’m so grateful for the men who decided that this was worth fighting for long ago, so that I don’t have to fight for it today.
Thomas and I believe in the good fight for freedom and independence so much that we’ve actually basically made it our life’s work to both establish independence and true freedom for ourselves, but also to help create it for others. Financial freedom is a thing. And it’s not all about the money people, but how independent would you be if you didn’t have to live in debt? We’re not there yet- we’ve got loans, believe you me- but what I’m learning here in the south is people really do buy things with cash! Like cars and even houses! What a freaking thought, right? It’s so completely respectable and so outside the box, that I think I’m just going to do it from here on out! That’s independence because man, the only chains I still feel in my life are the chains from what I don’t own outright- including my education, my home, my car, etc.
Let’s talk time freedom! Who reading this has to report to someone else? Who has to show up at a job for most of their day? Who has to ask for permission to participate in their life? I’m talking about permission to attend a child’s field trip, or take a vacation, or just even be sick. You have the ability to break FREE of this, Readers. I’m telling you. Why not? Take the road less traveled… find a way, because we CAN! We get to in this country. We don’t actually HAVE to do things the ‘traditional’ or ‘normal’ way. We can break the mold, and for goodness sakes, we should! People died so that we would have the chance to dream.
They say this is the home of the free because of the brave, right? Well, my challenge to you today is to BE BRAVE! Be one of the brave ones! I’m not telling you to join the military (although that is something Thomas felt compelled to do as well because of this premise of us wanting to help other’s gain freedom and independence), but I am telling you to exercise the freedoms that have been fought for and won for YOU. You are free. You are an independent thinker. Now all you have to do is go and be brave.
Don’t give up your independence by succumbing to dependence on others. Hear me, Readers, because I’m talking about depending on others approval, others acceptance, others opinions, others decisions, others consent, others kind words, others understanding, others judgements, others two cents…
Don’t give away your freedom to others.
Be you. Do you. Love you. Freely.
Because you CAN.