Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for all of those who have died serving in the United States' armed forces.
We are so blessed to live in a nation full of freedom. This freedom was not free. Without the sacrifice of our soldiers, we surely would not have the nation that we have today. We so often take for granted our many blessings. This shouldn't be. Memorial Day is an opportunity for us to not take things for granted.
In John 15:13 Jesus said, "Greater love has no man than this: that a man lay down his life for his friends." Those who have sacrificed their lives in defense of our freedom, and to protect their brothers in arms, point to the type of sacrificial love that Jesus was talking about. Though Christ's sacrifice was the ultimate sacrifice, had eternal consequences, and cannot be compared to any other sacrifice, it is OK for us to feel a weightiness and appreciation concerning those who laid down their lives for our country.
We who are living have a responsibility to not allow the sacrifice of those who gave their lives while protecting this this nation to be in vain. Our modern American culture is one of narcissism and selfishness. Many people see Memorial Day as just a day to get some incredible sales, not have to go to work, and have barbecues with their families. It is so much more than that.
So, this Memorial Day, I would like to call you to do several things to honor the lives of those who died in service.
- Be thankful. We live in such an amazing country. God wants us to be thankful for this incredible blessing. As I have mentioned so many have sacrificed their lives for the preservation of our freedom. To properly celebrate Memorial Day, we must be filled with thankfulness.
- Have an attitude of vigilance. Despite all of America's downfalls, we have been a light to the nations. The devil would like nothing more than to undermine our country morally, politically and culturally. The only way this won't happen is if we as Christians accept responsibility for vocally and boldly standing against agendas and movements trying to undermine the Christian framework and foundation of our nation. Jesus said in Luke 12:48c: "From him to whom much was entrusted, much will be asked."
- Remember the sacrifice of those who died in service. Think about how people all throughout our country's history have been willing to die to protect our freedoms. Think about the countless times soldiers went running into battles from which they knew they would never likely return. Think about the times that a soldier sacrificed his, or her, life to save their friends. These thoughts are sobering thoughts, but they will help you realize why there even is a Memorial Day.
- Pray for the family members of those who have lost someone in the conflicts of the past 70-80 years. Though soldiers are willing to sacrifice their lives, it does result in hardship and sorrow for their immediate family members and friends. Pray that the Lord would comfort those who have lost someone they love. Pray that God surround them with His love. Pray that those who have never been healed from the pain of their loss would open their hearts up to Jesus to allow Him to redeem and heal.
- Pray for those who are currently in our armed services. One of the biggest ways we can honor those who have fallen is to pray for those who are still living. Pray for the protection and covering of our nation's soldiers. Pray that the Holy Spirit moves among the different branches of the armed forces to lead soldiers into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ and enables them to live holy and moral lives unto the Lord.
As Christians, God does not want us divorced from politics and social issues. We live in a nation that has had to be protected from outside forces. Right now, there are political and social forces that are trying to undermine the Christian fabric of our nation from within. Too many have given the ultimate sacrifice of their lives to protect our nation from outside threats for us to sit idly by as our nation falls apart from within. So, this Memorial Day, I would like to challenge you to see the times we are living in and fulfill your responsibility to be a bold voice of truth, morality and righteousness for our nation. Stand for the gospel of Jesus Christ. To do so would be the best way to truly honor those who have given their lives for the nation.
David Hoffman is an evangelist and the director of Kingdom Enterprises, an outreach and evangelism ministry in Tucson, Arizona. His passions are to reach the lost with the gospel of Jesus Christ, ignite a passion for evangelism within the lives of believers and help equip them to live Spirit-filled and Spirit-empowered lives. For more information or to contact him, please go to HisKingdomEnterprises.
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