John 15:12-14 (ESV)
12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you.
Memorial Day is a day that is set aside to remember, and honor, our brave soldiers who have given their lives to protect our land and keep us free. It began as a day to honor our Civil War dead, but after World War I, it was expanded to include our war dead from all the wars in which America was involved.
Our country has fought in 12 major wars. In every one of these cases, we have asked the young people of our nation to be willing to give their lives in the name of freedom (for us and others in foreign lands.) The sacrifices these young men and women have made can never be totally comprehended nor can they be repaid by us.
Just stop and think about a little of what these wonderful young people have given up for us. At the very least, they have given years of their life, time away from their families, to serve their country which they love. They have given us any chance of setting down “roots”, having to move from base to base once every 3 to 4 years. Many will be physically disabled the rest of their life, having the use of one or more of their limbs taken from them. Scores have been mentally disabled resulting in them being unable to handle day to day living. And thousands upon thousands have given the ultimate sacrifice, their life, so that we can continue to enjoy our lives living safely in a land of freedom.
We can never begin to understand what they went through, and are continuing to go through, all because they love their nation and the freedoms, we take for granted every day. We can never begin to repay them and their families for the sacrifices they have made for us. It seems as if saying “Thank You” just isn’t enough.
On this Memorial Day weekend, let us remember the brave soldiers who have so unselfishly given of themselves for us. Let’s not only appreciate their actions but then take steps to help these veterans and their families whenever and wherever we can.
But also this weekend, let us remember the Lord Jesus Christ and all that He has done for us so that we might be saved from the eternal punishment for our sins. And then out of appreciation for His works, let us give ourselves for others, obeying the perfect law of Christ…
Dear Lord, we are so grateful for those who gave everything so that we could have the freedoms we have. Thank You for giving Your life so that we could have eternal life. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.