I’m really grateful for Memorial Day this year. It’s not because I just need a Monday off or because I’m going to eat burgers and hot dogs without restraint. It’s because I get to pause and reflect on what happened at places like Yorktown, Belleau Woods, Iwo Jima, Khe Sanh, the Chosin Reservoir, and Baghdad where sacrifice for others was common. When I slow down and consider the high price others have paid for American freedom, I’m humbled. I feel a real sense of obligation to honor their sacrifice with my life.
For those who quickly point out America’s flaws, let me confess – America certainly doesn’t have a spotless past. No country does. But to forget the parts of our past that put on display our highest ideals and to ignore the high cost our heroes have paid for our freedom would be unthinkable. It would be a terrible mistake.
We need Memorial Day so we never forget how blessed we are right now as a nation. I thank God for our American heroes and I’m thankful for the foresight of leaders who picked a day to set aside to honor the ones who died for our freedom.
Since I’m also a citizen of another home, an eternal and perfect one, I want to take a few minutes to remember some who died for that cause. For the apostles and the believers who spread the Gospel and became martyrs, I’m grateful. For people like John Hus, Michael Sattler, Martin Luther King Jr. and other reformers who fought to reclaim the Gospel or to reform the Church, I’m grateful. By the way, if you don’t know the stories of these people – google them now and get to know them!
Most of all, I thank my heavenly Father for accepting on my behalf the blood of His Son that was shed for me and for all who would worship Him. And I’m thankful that though He died, He lives!
Those who know freedom today should never forget the stories of our heroes.
I hope you and yours have a Happy Memorial Day!