What Is Your Song?

First Morning Home…

Star Spangled Banner
Original Image of Star Spangled Banner

And the laundry list of “to-do’s” is growing. With each glance about my life I find something new and important that needs to be done. Like, as in, “now…’!

First and foremost, there is no way you can visit this countries history laden sights in a single visit. Even if you had all the time and money in the world, there is simply more to experience than a single lifetime will allow.

For example, driving over the Chesapeake Bay out of Annapolis in an uncomfortable car, we forced ourselves to return back to our hotel – even though a peculiar sign made me want to divert to the “Oldest English Settlement” near Stevensville, MD. As the sign flashed by, a date from the 1500’s was gleaned but not remembered. 

How exciting to see this much history of our nation! I’ve been to much older places in Germany, England, Scotland, Jordan and Israel… But those are all “over there” and this was “here!”

One last mental visit to the East Coast forces me to spend a few moments collecting my thoughts for this weekend. We had a few minutes left so we drove to Fort McHenry in Baltimore, just a few miles out of downtown and in an industrial / residential setting was the National Park Service. We were not able to stay long due to our flight home, and the fact that so many kids from local schools were nosily enjoying and learning the history.

Ft HenryOn September 13th, 1814, Francis Scott Keys watched the fighting between the newly minted United States of America and the British forces near Fort McHenry. He penned some words that could be either a poem or lyrics to the song we sing today as our National Anthem. It was slow to gain prominence and was often sung to a pub song very popular in the day. 

Regardless, this song was proclaimed by President Wilson to be sung at all official events in 1916, and in 1931 (between the births of my mother and father) this song became the National Anthem for our nation.

Over 200 years in the making. A song becomes an anthem.

This makes me wonder what my lyrical words today will be like in 200 years. Will it become a song or poem for the ages? Think about John Newton who penned the words to Amazing Grace after a horrific shipwreck in 1748. It only took another 25 years before the words showed up at a sermon and was probably “chanted” with no music yet written. It made it into print in 1779, but did not gain popularity until linked with a known melody called “New Britain” and this is how we know it today.

Nearly 300 years later we sing it and worship the Grace of our God.

My thought today. Write your melodies and poems. Help them to be visible. Who knows what future generation you will affect from life’s experiences today? Live and write your experiences for future generations. Who knows who you will impact?

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