I had a great weekend and I hope you all did too.
I had Friday off, so I slept in (until about 11, which is early) and went shopping (jeans at GAP for $20? don't have to tell me twice). Then I met Hollie for a matinee at the Rave. We saw The Proposal. And it was H-I-Larry-O-U-S. I will be buying it when it comes out on DVD. Ryan Reynolds is so precious and so hilarious. And well, there are no words for Sandra Bullock. Hope Floats changed my life. The end.
Saturday, I went down to Prattville/Billingsly with Hollie to celebrate the Fourth with her charming little family. These people are country to the bone and I love them for it. We went down to her sister's house and laid in/by the pool and ate until we couldn't stand up. Seriously. Just looking at the amount of food gave me chest pains. But it was good. And there was homemade ice cream and watermelon. Hallelujah, praise the King. Amen.
We also decided to go a little ways down I-65 to Montgomery to the Biscuits game because a) they were having fireworks after, b) it was only $5 and c) they were playing our Barons! So Hollie's mom, Hollie and I headed down and enjoyed some baseball and fireworks. The Barons won 10-2 and the fireworks were spectacular. It was also so neat to see the players just laying around on the field like kids watching the fireworks. If it hadn't have been so dark, I would've take a picture because, well, it was a picture perfect moment.
I couldn't help but smile when the fireworks started and the music started playing. The Fourth of July is one of my most favorite holidays and fireworks are my favorite part. It never feels real until you hear those seven little words sung --- "...And I'm proud to be an American!" Ha. It's so cliche but with all the stuff that is going on in the world -- from Iraq to Honduras to North Korea -- I really couldn't help thinking how true those words were for me right now. I've found myself thanking God that I'm an American citizen more recently than I have ever before.
And then I heard Ray Charles singing "America the Beautiful" and I got all misty-eyed. It just seals the deal, doesn't it?
Of course, we didn't get in until almost 1 a.m., so I decided to just sleep in and go to church tonight to the 6 p.m. service. (Our church does the same service at night that they do in the morning.)
Let me tell you, my church is amazing. I'm continually in awe of the people that I am surrounded by and the leadership that God has placed in that church. God has richly blessed each and every one of them and they are so obedient in using their gifts to bring glory to his name.
I've been reminded so much lately of the real freedom that I have in Christ. Of course, the Fourth of July is a time when we celebrate our nation's anniversary of gaining our own freedom. But with that, I'm also reminded of the freedom that we have in Jesus Christ. Most people see salvation as freedom from sin. And it is. But recently I've been reminded that salvation gives me freedom to live the way I want to -- the way God wants me to. Because I'm reminded that I have a Savior who endured every trial that I could ever even imagine being faced with, and came out on top every time. That's so encouraging!
Anyhoo, I hope everyone had a fantastic Fourth! In less than four days, I'll be on my way to the beach for vacation with the family! Woohoo!