Those thirteen little colonies to the left look teensy--especially if you’re from the West. Even so, the colorful little slice was inhabited by visionaries who bet their lives, their fortunes and their sacred honor on a start-up designed to continuously grow and get better.
As the Declaration of Independence was made, John Adams wrote to fellow visionary Abigail Adams:
“I believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other.”
Check out his closing nine words: “From one end of this continent to the other.” There was a lot of geography between the colorful little slice and the West Coast (with everything in between claimed by other countries), but it is clear that he had a vision that drew him and others forward like a magnet. I think he knew it would take the work of generations.
OK, not to overdo the comparison, but sometimes in the interest of my own vision, I try to gaze into the future a little bit too—especially on these long weekends. As I think about ways I want my life and work to grow and get better, I imagine what I might see out there in a few years. I ask myself:
- What are you doing out there on a daily basis that makes you more generous and content?
- Who is thanking you?
- Whom are you thanking?
In the meantime, here’s a link to the National Archives and to the Declaration that inspired John and Abigail.