Lady Liberty – A Symbol for Us All

Recently I was fortunate to visit the Statue of Liberty.  I have seen her before and was impressed then; however, this time, I was really taken aback.  Lady Liberty, so magnificent, so strong, so determined, arm pointing to the sky in triumph.  As the ferry approached, the familiar statue seemed impressive in a beautiful sort of way.  As we exited the boat and began walking around the island, I stared up at this familiar statue.  I stared at the proud face, the enormous size, the leg sticking out in front all dressed in bluish-green.  It was an imposing site against a cloudy, overcast sky.  Fortunately the rain and drizzle had stopped, and I was free to walk about, listening to my head set and the story of Lady Liberty.

The Statue of Liberty, also known as Lady Libe...

The Statue of Liberty, also known as Lady Liberty her official name is Liberty Enlightening the World. It was dedicated on October 28, 1886, and is a monument commemorating the centennial of the signing of the United States Declaration of Independence, given to the United States by the people of France to represent the friendship between the two countries established during the American Revolution. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

First I was reminded that France gave the statue to the United States in 1886 as a gift to the new country.  She was a vision of freedom, breaking free of the chains on her ankles (leading to the “stepping forward” look) and a luminary of light and all that goes with that – democracy and freedom from oppression (thus the holding of the torch).  This statue was to be a symbol of the possibilities that await when you break free from that which is holding you back and embrace the new, the promise.  Lady Liberty was a large reminder that there is light to be seen if you just look for it.  There is something better if you dare to believe in it.

I sat in front of her and after a while I turned and sat looking out from her at the rest of the people exploring, learning, and taking photos.  It made me feel good that so many people from different countries were visiting her and listening to the story, hopefully being reminded as I was that there is possibility, there is hope, there is always something better if you choose to take that journey.

As I was considering all these people and all their countries and all their views on life, my thoughts were interrupted by the continued story of Lady Liberty.  As the narrator continued, he said eventually Lady Liberty became associated with immigration as she was the first symbol of America that so many immigrants saw as their ship got closer to their new country.  But, after this reminder, the narrator continued with retelling the horrific events of September 11, 2001.  “After the twin towers were hit and there was so much destruction and sadness, the smoke started to clear, and Lady Liberty could be seen standing proudly in the background as if to say ‘America is still here, still strong, and our spirits cannot be dampened.’”  I imagined what a vision that must have been to the people there that day.  I hope some of the severe pain and sadness was helped a little by viewing Lady Liberty, standing proud and a symbol of America.

Another feeling of happiness came over me as I engulfed this story and considered how amazing life is – fortunately horrible events often have some good that comes out of it (e.g. people’s altruistic actions to help strangers during 9/11).  As I was pondering the complexity of life and the beauty of it – right at that very precise moment of time, the clouds moved aside and the sun began to shine again brightly.  God smiled on me and confirmed that everything was going to be alright.  Wherever I am, He is.

Needless to say, I promptly bought myself a ticky-tack statue of Lady Liberty that lives on my desk.  It makes me happy to see her every day and it reminds me that she is a symbol for all of us – the beauty of life, the possibilities that await us, and the reminder to never give up hope.


4 responses to this post.

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