Archive for July 6th, 2015

 

Have you ever wondered what happened to the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence?

What fates befell them for daring to put their names to that document?

​* ​Five signers were captured by the British as traitors and tortured before they died.

​* ​Twelve had their homes ransacked and burned.

​* ​Two lost their sons serving in the Revolutionary Army, another had two sons captured.

​* ​Nine of the 56 fought and died from wounds or hardships of the Revolutionary War.

​* ​They signed and they pledged their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.

What kind of men were they?

​* ​Twenty-four were lawyers and jurists. Eleven were merchants, nine were farmers and
large plantation owners; men of means, well educated. But they signed the Declaration
of Independence knowing full well that the penalty would be death if they were captured.

​* ​Carter Braxton of Virginia, a wealthy planter and trader, saw his ships swept from the
seas by the British Navy. He sold his home and properties to pay his debts, and died in rags.

​* ​Thomas McKeam was so hounded by the British that he was forced to move his family
almost constantly. He served in the Congress without pay, and his family was kept in hiding.
His possessions were taken from him, and poverty was his reward.

​* ​Vandals or soldiers looted the properties of Dillery, Hall, Clymer, Walton, Gwinnett, Heyward,
Ruttledge, and Middleton.

​* ​At the battle of Yorktown, Thomas Nelson, Jr., noted that the British General Cornwallis had
taken over the Nelson home for his headquarters. He quietly urged General George Washington
to open fire. The home was destroyed, and Nelson died bankrupt.

​* ​Francis Lewis had his home and properties destroyed. The enemy jailed his wife, and she died
within a few months.

​* ​John Hart was driven from his wife’s bedside as she was dying. Their13 children fled for their
lives. His fields and his gristmill were laid to waste. For more than a year, he lived in forests and
caves, returning home to find his wife dead and his children vanished. A few weeks later, he died
from exhaustion and a broken heart.

​* ​Norris and Livingston suffered similar fates.

Such were the stories and sacrifices of the American Revolution. These were not wild-eyed,
rabble-rousing ruffians. They were soft-spoken men of means and education. They had security,
but they valued liberty more.

Standing straight, and unwavering, they pledged: “For the support of this declaration, with firm
reliance on the protection of the divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other, our lives,
our fortunes, and our sacred honor.”

They gave you and me a free and independent America. The history books never told you a lot
about what happened in the Revolutionary War. We didn’t fight just the British. We were British
subjects at that time and we fought our own government!

Some of us take these liberties so much for granted, but we shouldn’t.

So, take a few minutes while enjoying your 4th of July Holiday and silently thank these patriots.
It’s not much to ask for the price they paid. Remember: Freedom is never free!

I hope you will show your support by please sending this to as many people as you can. It’s time
we get the word out that patriotism is NOT a sin, and the Fourth of July has more to it than beer,
picnics, and baseball games.

 
 
 

Take time to read this beautiful short story. You will be so happy you did.

IT’S WHAT YOU SCATTER

I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes… I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas.

I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes.

Pondering the peas, I couldn’t help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.

‘Hello Barry, how are you today?’

‘H’lo, Mr. Miller. Fine, thank ya. Jus’ admirin’ them peas. They sure look good’

‘They are good, Barry. How’s your Ma?’
‘Fine. Gittin’ stronger alla’ time.’
‘Good. Anything I can help you with?’
‘No, Sir. Jus’ admirin’ them peas.’
‘Would you like to take some home?’ asked Mr. Miller.

‘No, Sir. Got nuthin’ to pay for ’em with.’

‘Well, what have you to trade me for some of those peas?’

‘All I got’s my prize marble here.’

‘Is that right? Let me see it’, said Miller.

‘Here ’tis. She’s a dandy.’

‘I can see that. Hmm mmm, only thing is this one is blue and I sort of go for red. Do you have a red one like this at home?’ the store owner asked.

‘Not zackley but almost.’

‘Tell you what. Take this sack of peas home with you and next trip this way let me look at that red marble’. Mr. Miller told the boy.

‘Sure will. Thanks Mr. Miller.’

Mrs. Miller, who had been standing nearby, came over to help me.

With a smile she said, ‘There are two other boys like him in our community, all three are in very poor circumstances. Jim just loves to bargain with them for peas, apples, tomatoes, or whatever.

When they come back with their red marbles, and they always do, he decides he doesn’t like red after all and he sends them home with a bag of produce for a green marble or an orange one, when they come on their next trip to the store.’

I left the store smiling to myself, impressed with this man. A short time later I moved to Colorado , but I never forgot the story of this man, the boys, and their bartering for marbles.

Several years went by, each more rapid than the previous one. Just recently I had occasion to visit some old friends in that Idaho community and while I was there learned that Mr. Miller had died. They were having his visitation that evening and knowing my friends wanted to go, I agreed to accompany them. Upon arrival at the mortuary we fell into line to meet the relatives of the deceased and to offer whatever words of comfort we could.

Ahead of us in line were three young men. One was in an army uniform and the other two wore nice haircuts, dark suits and white shirts…all very professional looking. They approached Mrs. Miller, standing composed and smiling by her husband’s casket.

Each of the young men hugged her, kissed her on the cheek, spoke briefly with her and moved on to the casket. Her misty light blue eyes followed them as, one by one; each young man stopped briefly and placed his own warm hand over the cold pale hand in the casket. Each left the mortuary awkwardly, wiping his eyes.

Our turn came to meet Mrs. Miller. I told her who I was and reminded her of the story from those many years ago and what she had told me about her husband’s bartering for marbles. With her eyes glistening, she took my hand and led me to the casket.

‘Those three young men who just left were the boys I told you about.

They just told me how they appreciated the things Jim ‘traded’ them. Now, at last, when Jim could not change his mind about color or size….they came to pay their debt.’

‘We’ve never had a great deal of the wealth of this world,’ she confided, ‘but right now, Jim would consider himself the richest man in Idaho …’

With loving gentleness she lifted the lifeless fingers of her deceased husband. Resting underneath were three exquisitely shined red marbles.

The Moral:
We will not be remembered by our words, but by our kind deeds. Life is not measured by the breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath.

Today I wish you a day of ordinary miracles ~ A fresh pot of coffee you didn’t make yourself…

An unexpected phone call from an old friend…. Green stoplights on your way to work….

The fastest line at the grocery store….

A good sing-along song on the radio..

Your keys found right where you left them.

Send this to the people you’ll never forget. I just did…

If you don’t send it to anyone, it means you are in way too much of a hurry to even notice the ordinary miracles when they occur.

IT’S NOT WHAT YOU GATHER, BUT WHAT YOU SCATTER THAT TELLS WHAT KIND OF LIFE YOU HAVE LIVED!

 
 

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