O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.
When we go to a Super Bowl party or watch the Blackhawks with friends, my daughter, bless her heart, is the Shusher. If the rest of the group just goes about their business and conversations during the National Anthem, Ana comes in and tells them to ZIP IT… this is my mom’s favorite part of the whole game.
Yes, I cry when I hear or sing The Star Spangled Banner. I love what it means, how it sounds, the grandeur of a full concert band or trained vocalist. I cherish the significance and history.
But lately I’ve realized what the lyrics don’t say. It’s not the land of the free and the home of the brave men and women in uniform or …the brave who gave their lives for their country or …the brave ones back then or over there.
No, it’s the home of the brave. Period. All of us. We all live here. This is our home.
Or at least this song gives us that credit. And our forefathers gave us that freedom.
But I don’t think I can wear the badge. I don’t make waves or engage in the controversial or push back when there’s reason to push.
No, I’m not brave. But I’m not really afraid, either. It’s more like accommodating. Or passive.
Or, oh, good golly, Miss Molly. Am I just comfortable?
I don’t believe for one minute that it’s wrong to live a good life, have fun and enjoy the blessings we have. But, my friends and loved ones, we are not called to be comfortable.
We are called to do what is right. And say what is right. And fight for what is right.
For a long time, I’ve known deep down that friends and family of mine on both the right and the left may be surprised by where I stand on social, political and Christian issues. I’ve just kind of kept those things to myself.
I’m not sure that’s OK. We are told to be strong and courageous.
Now, don’t expect any immediate or dramatic reveals. I’m not sure I’m ready to run head first into uncomfortable. I’m not quite that brave.
Not yet anyway.