One particularly powerful scene depicts Wallace as he is preparing a rag tag band of rebels for battle against King Edward Longshank’s powerful English army. At the cusp of battle, the Scots are woefully outmanned and outgunned. They are also wavering.
Wallace rallies his troops by saying: “I am William Wallace, and I see before me an army of my countrymen here in defiance of tyranny. You have come to fight as free men, and free men you are. You are free, free from badges, free from flesh, and free to love. What will you do with that freedom? Will you fight?”
A tall soldier near the front, eyeing the huge forces arrayed against them across the valley, answers: “Fight against that? No, we will run, and we will live.”
To which Wallace responds: “Ay, fight and you may die, run and you'll live. At least a while! And dying in your beds many years from now, you would be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance, to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom.”
Wallace’s question remains with us this Independence Day weekend: “What will you do with your freedom?!” Hopefully, it always will!
Each generation of Americans would do well to ask this question afresh and anew. Wise men have always known that real freedom can only exist hand in hand with responsibility. Freedom, true freedom, entails assuming responsibility, both for our own lives and for the lives of others.
For this reason, each generation of Americans would also do well pause to remember those who came before us and sacrificed so much in order that we may have the freedoms that we claim to cherish so much! Had they not assumed responsibility in their day and age, it is doubtful that we would have the very freedoms we now enjoy.
Above all, each generation of Americans would also do well to give thanks to the God who bestowed our great freedoms upon us. We will always make a tragic mistake when we attempt to separate God from our freedom. Without God, our concept of freedom can easily degenerate into selfishness.
The testimony of the Psalmist was: “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD!” I pray America will always remember that God is the source of our blessings; and that we will honor Him accordingly with how we choose to live.
Yes, my fellow Americans, William Wallace’s piercing question is well worth pondering as we celebrate this Independence Day weekend. “What will we do with our freedom?!”
I leave you with the prayer of Peter Marshall, famed Presbyterian Pastor and U.S. Senate Chaplain of an earlier era, who once famously said: “May we think of freedom, not as the right to do as we please, but as the opportunity to do what is right.”
as well as: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Wallace.
MARSHALL'S PRAYER: https://www.azquotes.com/author/9514-Peter_Marshall.
SEE ALSO: https://liberty-virtue-independence.blogspot.com/2011/08/prayers-of-reverend-peter-marshall.html.