This week we enjoy a much-appreciated holiday. Well, for all of those who wore themselves out serving Jesus at VBS, the break on Tuesday can’t come soon enough. I wasn’t around too much, but what I saw made me long for this precious day off. What an amazing team — VBS was an incredible week of ministry, mayhem, and music. My hat is off to the huge team that came together to put this week together. Well done.

By Friday, I got to thinking about this holiday coming up. A Tuesday holiday is rare. Since Congress moved most holidays to Mondays, a mid-week holiday should only be July 4th or Christmas, right? Well, Thanksgiving, but it is routinely on a Thursday. Some will be off for four days. Some for just Tuesday. But the routine of the work week will be interrupted.

We’ve moved holidays to Mondays for a reason:  to allow as many three-day weekends as possible. I’m sure it has something to do with work flow efficiency, but it’s really about personal enjoyment and eliminated interrupted weeks. We like our fun.

I’m sort of glad that once in a while we celebrate a holiday on the holiday. Besides, it’s a little tough to celebrate the 4th of July on second or the fifth. That’s just wrong. I think the middle-of-the-week holiday does make us stop and think about the holiday, and not just make it completely about our personal pleasure, as can be our pattern.

We celebrate on Tuesday the independence of our nation. It was a pivotal decision — and a gutsy decision – by a group of people committed to freedom. To honor them and the birth of our nation, we set aside a day to stop the routine of life to celebrate America with family and friends. Our world would be a much different place without the beacon of light which is America. God has blessed America.

The holiday might interrupt your week ahead. It might force you to work and then not work and then work again. But at least this year the holiday might make you will stop and think about freedom, and not just sleep or travel through another of those three-day weekends.

I propose we relish this mid-week celebration. It forces us to change up our routine and pause to consider the significance of our founding. And it causes us to stop and evaluate how we are using the freedom declared so long ago. Do we spend that freedom only on ourselves and our personal pleasures? Or do we use the political freedom we enjoy sharing the much-more significant spiritual freedom we have through Jesus.

May our celebration on Tuesday reflect the spiritual truth that in Christ I am free. Don’t use that precious freedom declared so long for purely self-centered pleasures, but spend that freedom to impact the world for Christ.

I hope the jarring schedule of the week ahead will force us all to pause, to honor God and to evaluate how we utilize the amazing blessings of this great land. God bless America!