Up & Coming Weekly

June 21, 2022

Up and Coming Weekly is a weekly publication in Fayetteville, NC and Fort Bragg, NC area offering local news, views, arts, entertainment and community event and business information.

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Page 23 of 28

WWW.UPANDCOMINGWEEKLY.COM JUNE 22 - 28, 2022 UCW 23 Don't lose your grip on love and loyalty by DAN DEBRULER Over time I've come to recognize freedom less for the ideal we portray it to be and more for the double-edged sword it truly is. In America, we lend a lot of credence to the ideals of free- dom. Freedom of speech. Freedom of religion. Freedom of Information. Freedom of choice. As the sword of those freedoms cut one way, there is always the dangerous second edge that slices just as cleanly as we draw it back to its scabbard. We are free to choose, but we are not free from the consequences of our choices. In "e Message," a mod- ern English translation of the Bible, there's some good advice in the book of Proverbs. Chapter 3, verses 3-4, says, "Don't lose your grip on love and loyalty. Tie them around your neck; carve their initials on your heart. Earn a reputation for living well in God's eyes and the eyes of the people." We see the two edges of the sword of freedom in use more often than we might even realize, cutting first one way and then the other. Free- dom of speech, for example, sounds like a great idea at the onset. As part of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, this freedom grants us the right to speak our mind or beliefs without the fear of retribution on the front edge, but it grants anyone who opposes that view the same right. is concept doesn't necessarily sit well in the modern American culture, in which opposing views are often labeled hate speech in an attempt to shut down the very freedom employed by their team. at's why I presented the Bible Proverb as good advice. It suggested (long before our Constitu- tion or the First Amendment, by the way) that we not lose our grip on love or loyalty. And the truth is that we can assert our beliefs and even speak our mind and do it with love, respect and even loyalty to fellow citizens of this nation and planet. Freedom of religion, another facet of the same amendment, bears a similarly sharp edge. In a nation arguably founded on the premise of one religion, we are granted the free exercise of that religion without interference from the government so long as it doesn't interfere with any of the other rights and freedoms granted within the Constitution. Still cool. But what about religions other than our own? Right. Same freedom. Again, let's go back to that Proverb, and maybe even go a line or two further where we read, "Trust God from the bot- tom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own. Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track. Don't assume that you know it all" (Proverbs 3:5-6). So as you celebrate our nation's inde- pendence this year, think about the freedom you've been given, but take a little extra time to consider those same freedoms granted to those you're lin- ing up against. Don't lose your grip on loyalty or love. And don't assume you know it all. FAITH DAN DEBRULER, General Manager, WCLN. Comments? Editor@upandcomingweekly. com. 910-484-6200. Photo courtesy of Pexels C u st o m C a teri n g by T w o B r o t h ers Private Romantic Aordable Specializing In: Weddings, Corporate Events, Holiday Parties, Special Banquets & More! eVineNC.com or TwoBrothersCateringNC.com 806 Katie Street Fayetteville NC (O Owen Drive behind O-Reilly's) Custom Catering By:Two Brothers Call us to schedule your next event! Call 910-584-9892 Serving You Since 2004

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