Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Real Reason

Happy 4th of July! I’m sure most of us were yelling and screaming this to our friends and family just three short days ago. The 4th of July is meant to commemorate the day when the American colonists declared independence from Great Britain. Let’s be real… how many of us actually celebrate the real meaning of the 4th of July? Prior to this year, to me, the 4th of July meant being on the lake, town parades, and fireworks. This year I began to realize the real reason why we celebrate the 4th of July.

Quick Story: In 6th grade I met my best friend in the entire world. Ever since then, Ryan and I have been inseparable. We went to movies and sporting events, helped each other with homework, and we were even chapter and region FFA officers together. High school and FFA would not have been the same without Ryan by my side. Just two short weeks ago Ryan left all his friends and family in Minnesota to begin basic training at the United States Air Force Academy. Ryan committed himself to serving our great country just as the brave men and women did 238 years ago. Having to celebrate the 4th of July without Ryan this year helped me understand what this great holiday was all about. 

This 4th of July I went to my teammate Dalton’s grad party and ranch rodeo. Just like before the start of every sporting event, the National Anthem was played before the rodeo. All of the cowboys and cowgirls lined up in the center of the arena and an older gentlemen rode his horse around the arena with a giant American flag. As I was watching ol’ glory fly around the arena I instantly thought of Ryan. It made me think, how blessed and lucky am I to have the freedom to be here on this beautiful day. If those revolutionists would have decided to not fight the British I would not have had the freedom to be in that very place.

That same idea can be applied to FFA. If America did not declare their independence and not succeeded would we still have FFA? I am very thankful that since then American soldiers have continued to fight to protect the freedoms our country has and that has allowed our great organization to grow and prosper. Thanks to our soldiers FFA members are able to attend leadership conferences, show livestock, and participant in activities that they chose!

The old saying “freedom isn’t really free” rang true to me this 4th of July. Next 4th of July, as well as, in our everyday lives, do not forget to thank a veteran and today’s service men and women for all that they do. Without their bravery and sacrifices we would not be able to be members of The National FFA Organization. Remember the real reason for the celebration. Thank you servicemen and women! Happy Birthday America! 

Stationed by the Plow,

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