Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité

Bastille day! Today the French celebrate freedom with fireworks, fêtes, fellowship and food. July 14, France's national holiday holds a special place in my heart as it marks the 9 year anniversary that my Grandfather made his debut in heaven after battling lung cancer. He loved all things French and gave me the gift of travel. I first came to France 13 years ago on a family reunion he planned. It was then I fell in love with the culture, language and lifestyle of France. 9 years ago I had my 16th birthday in Paris and was a babysitter for an artist family…  I am in awe of how God has sewn together my story and past to serve artists in Paris. Today I celebrate the gift of life and life abundant and remember the legacy my Grandfather left behind. 

Liberté, egalité, fraternité (freedom, equality, brotherhood) are the words that marked the French Revolution and can be seen carved all over Paris on buildings, museums, monuments and streets. Do these words still hold meaning today? How are they relevant in a society and world marked by individuality and consumerism? I have been dwelling on the fact that without LOVE none of these things are possible. True, authentic love is what creates freedom and justice that lasts. I have experienced family here in France: authentic community rooted in love. Brotherhood/sisterhood is the radically unconditional, lived out loving of one another... 

It’s found in shared cups of coffee, pique niques on the seine, sunsets found on rooftops, ocean horizons, neighbourhood gatherings and Easter sunrise services. More and more I discover this kind of eternal love in everyday actions and mundane moments. Beyond a political or national holiday: let us keep running towards freedom, justice and family together.