Monday, May 25, 2015

Memorial Day Tribute

Today we are out of school and many are off work to commemorate Memorial Day.

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We honor men and women, past and present, for their service.  Many have given the ultimate sacrifice of their life.  Since before even the Revolutionary War, individuals have banded together for a common cause, defending the right of citizens to have representation, to have liberty protected for religion, speech, and more.

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I have been fortunate to grow up around family and friends that respect our country and those who serve and protect her.  On both sides of my family there were men who served in the Revolutionary War. I have two grandfathers that served in WWII.  One was in the Army stateside as a drill sergeant.  The other served in the Marines in the Pacific theater and was at Iwo Jima and Japan immediately following the atomic bomb. Many other members of their generation in our family served in WWII as well.  My father was in the Army.  My uncle served in the Air Force.  My stepfather served in the Air Force during the Vietnam War and was a pilot.  My father-in-law was in the Army Reserves during Vietnam.  His father served in WWII.  All of them have faithfully served their country.  I am forever grateful for their commitment and sacrifice.

Today we remember them.

We also remember those who left wives and husbands, children, parents, friends, careers, neighbors and schooling to answer the call of their country. Men and women that have dropped everything in times of war and peace.  They have aided communities in the aftermath of natural disasters, supported local law enforcement during periods of unrest, flown across the world to aid in humanitarian efforts and served to protect other people who couldn't protect themselves against tyranny and atrocities.

Today we are thankful for their service.

We remember the widows and orphans.  We remember the children who never knew their mothers or fathers because they were born during deployment and their parent never returned.  We pray for the hearts of those still grieving their loved ones death.  We remember the injured veterans who lost limbs, eyesight, endured brain trauma or walk around with shrapnel forever embedded in their body.  We pray for those tortured by PTSD and horrific images they cannot erase from their minds.  We pray for peace for them.

We remain forever indebted to them for their sacrifice.

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We remember not only those with patriotic hearts and those who answered the call of duty, but we remember those who have left us a legacy of faith.  Growing up in a family that seeks God and yearns to follow his word is not a legacy I take for granted.  I have vivid memories of countless people in my early years reading scripture to me, telling me bible stories and imparting lessons of faith and truth.  My great-grandmother could still recite scripture from memory at 97 years old.  So many wonderful men and women of faith poured into my life as a young girl at my church growing up into my early adult years.  I've been blessed to know others along the way who took me in as family and loved me.

I honor those people today as well.  Some of them have gone on to glory and others continue to live lives of service for the Lord.

Today - pray for the lost that they might find their way to Christ.
Pray for the souls that have gone on before us, that their sacrifice would not be in vain.
Pray for those who stand on walls today, guarding our freedoms and risking their lives each day.
Pray for the ones who make laws and uphold laws - let our freedoms remain intact and let us continue to honor God in this country.
Pray for the families who still yearn for their loved ones to return.  Give them comfort.
Pray that we live like those who have the love of Christ and not those that are in bondage to sin.

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