Thursday, January 2, 2014

Arnold Friberg: On The Prayer At Valley Forge

2014 is the bicentennial year of the War of 1812, the burning of Washington, the Battle of Baltimore, and The Star-Spangled Banner. So much poignant history.

This painting takes us back a generation earlier, to the pain and sacrifice required to bring the infant American republic to birth.

I've always loved this painting, but I had never before heard the beautiful story behind its creation, the artist's motivation in painting it, as well as his legacy in giving a copy to each state, the White House, the Pentagon, and the Capitol.

At the end of our holiday season, after giving thanks for our blessings--paramount among which is our liberty ad freedom--after honoring the birth of the Savior of mankind who Washington referred to as "That all-wise and powerful Being upon whom alone our success depends," and after looking back upon the previous year, I hope we look forward to this New Year with a determination to remember  the sacrifice of those who founded, fought for, and maintained for the land we love. I hope we take moments to appreciate the fragility of liberty, and catch the fire that fueled the Founders and the generations of patriots that followed.

Friberg wanted to keep that understanding alive. 2014 gives us plenty of opportunities to gather our families ad remember together.