“For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”
On this day, in 1865, the state of Texas began celebrating Juneteenth, in honor of the emancipation from slavery in the state. I first learned of “Juneteenth” in 1988 when I joined Frito-Lay, which was headquartered in Plano, Texas. It wasn’t a company holiday, but those who worked in Headquarters would talk about it and later when I was transferred to Plano to work, it was part of the cultural activities of the Dallas area. The question I asked myself back in the late 80’s and I still ask myself now is, “why didn’t I know about Juneteenth while growing up”? As far as I can remember, it was never taught in our history lessons in grade school, middle school, high school or even in my liberal arts college degree. What we teach, we learn. What we learn, we pass on. What we pass on gets passed on to others. Do that enough times and things get remembered and become important. Today, a number of companies have added Juneteenth to their annual holiday schedule. I hope more do so that the next new employee who grew up not being taught, still has a chance to learn.
Juneteenth celebrates freedom. True freedom, as we know, is only in Christ. Jesus brought that freedom to all, without any distinction. Any limiting of the freedom that He wants for us, comes from our own doing and our own limiting and discrimination. On this day, let’s celebrate Juneteenth by asking God to challenge us, reveal to us, and show us the way for us to live out to others the freedom He brings so that others brightly see Him in shining through us.
Reference: 2 Corinthians 3:17 (New Living Translation)