Happy Memorial Day, everyone! This year I have probably reflected more about the meaning of this holiday than I ever have before. I'm one of the blessed ones who has never lost a close friend or loved one in battle. I haven't attended a soldier's funeral. I have not had to fully realize the price that has been paid to secure my freedom.
This morning I spent some time online reading tributes and looking at photographs of some of the brave men and women who have lost their lives in the fight for freedom. So many smiling faces, so many dreams to be fulfilled; yet they gave all without regret or apology because of their love for our great country. How humbling to know that they died for you and for me and for generations to come!
Yesterday Mr. C preached a message about remembering the faith of our spiritual forefathers. If you've read Foxe's Book of Martyrs, you know about the torture and cruel deaths experienced by many who refused to recant their belief in Jesus. These are all historical accounts of what people endured for their faith. Hebrews chapter 11, the Bible's "Hall of Faith", speaks of the torment experienced by those who stood firm in the faith. We should be encouraged to stand strong for Christ in the midst of the godlessness we see around us. Hebrews 12:1 reads, "Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us..." Our spiritual forefathers endured so much more persecution than we will ever imagine or face ourselves. We should not shrink from being the witnesses that God wants us to be. These Heros of the Faith contributed to the spiritual freedom we have today in America: the freedom to believe and worship as we choose.
On this Memorial Day, let's all take the time to remember those who have died for our freedoms both on the battlefield and at the stake. Remember the sacrifices they made, and remember the sacrifices that our U.S. military and their families are making today while the rest of us enjoy a holiday.
Labels: Special Days