For many of us, the price of freedom has come at great cost to our families. While I have not lost any immediate family members through military service, I have worked with those who have not been so fortunate.
I have worked closely with a number of military families during times of great emotional pain and sorrow — the kind of anguish that comes when young lives are, in our estimation, cut short. I have also had the privilege of knowing people who never really had the chance to know their parents or grandparents due to the casualties of war. That is the reality for one of our church staff members. Her father died while serving in Vietnam when she was just a little girl.
This day hits me hard every year as I think about the stark ambiguities that seem to be magnified on the evening news. A day that has been specifically set aside to remember those fallen men and women is marked less by memorials and more by boating and backyard barbecues.
On this Memorial Day, I urge you to interrupt your celebration of summer long enough to give sincere thanks to God for those brave soldiers who have made it possible for us to live in the land of the free.
However you choose to spend this day, say some special prayers for those families who are daily reminded of the sacrifices of their loved ones. For them every day is a memorial day.
May we never take our freedom for granted. And may we never ever forget that its price is paid in human lives.