Celebrating Freedom

I stopped by the annual Amish auction on June 24 at the Mullet farm in Atlantic. What a turnout! Around 2,000 people, both Amish and English, as they call us, attended. God provided perfect weather – it was about 70 degrees and sunny all day.

As always, food is the main draw for me. The intoxicating aroma of barbecuing chicken filled the air. Homemade pizza and cheeseburgers were for sale, along with lots of other foods and drinks. No one went hungry, that’s for sure.

I bought half a dozen glazed doughnuts. My family recently vacationed in the Outer Banks, North Carolina. Everyone raves about Duck Donuts. The distinction between Duck Donuts and other shops is they allow you to custom order. For example, you can top your doughnut with blueberry glaze and powdered sugar or maple icing and bacon. Give me a fresh Amish glazed doughnut any day. They’re simply the best.

Auctioneers sold gorgeous homemade quilts, handcrafted cabinets, horse tack, seed potatoes, and farming implements. I saw three tents and a barn packed with buyers, and each tent had its own auctioneer. Mark this auction on your 2018 calendar. It’s always the last Saturday of June.

This week we celebrate the birthday of our country and the signing of the Declaration of Independence. Much has changed since 1776. I can’t imagine our Founding Fathers envisioning women owning property, voting, and holding public office. I’m sure they’d be shocked that displaying the Ten Commandments or a Nativity scene would be a source of contention, either. But the United States is still the greatest country in the world.

As Americans, we have the freedom to display a sign that says “Jesus” in our front yards. Any citizen age 18 and older can vote for the public official they support. If we have the ambition and intelligence to do so, we can seek any career we want. We can protest the President’s executive orders or march in the annual March for Life, a pro-life rally held in Washington, D.C. every January. We are so blessed.

The Amish and others have the right to religious exemption to serving in the Armed Forces. Contrast this with Israelis, both men and women. Men serve for three years; women for a little less than two years. There are a few exemptions: married women, mothers, men studying Jewish law in an accredited institution, and certain religious minorities. There are other exemptions, too, but 80 percent of those drafted serve. Unreal. I can’t imagine knowing that as soon as my children graduated high school they’d be enlisting in the Army.

Last week I wrote about the proposed Staff Sergeant James Douglas Mowris Memorial Highway. Doug grew up in Adamsville and died in 2004 defending our country from terrorists in Afghanistan. We lost Captain Josh McClimans in Afghanistan in 2011 and Staff Sergeant David Veverka in Iraq in 2006, too. Remember these brave young men when you eat your cheeseburger on July 4.

Remember Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and John Hancock, too. All these men risked their safety by signing the Declaration of Independence because they believed in freedom. I praise God for these brave men, and for our country’s soldiers. I hope you’ll join me in praying God’s blessing on our nation.

Have a wonderful week. Blessings!