Lest We Forget
"And He [Jesus] took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, "This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me."1
Today in the United States is Memorial DayŚa national holiday "originally held in commemoration of soldiers killed in the American Civil War (1868). Its observance later extended to all U.S. war dead. National observance is marked by the placing of a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery."2
It is good to remember every day, and to celebrate this day with special thanksgiving for all who gave their lives to give us freedom. May we also remember in prayer today all of our Christian brothers and sisters who live in countries where they don't know the freedoms that we have.
As a kid growing up in Australia during World War II, how well I remember what the Americans did for my homeland. Had it not been for the American soldiers with the backing of the American Congress and people, Australia would not know the freedom it knows todayŚneither would the rest of the Western World. And if it weren't for the strength and determination of America today, we would all be living in a much different world. What if a Saddam Hussein or an Osama Bin Laden had the military might of the U.S.? The consequences would be unthinkable!
Someone asked Albert Einstein what kind of weapons would be used in the third World War. "Well," he answered, "I don't know ... but I can tell you what they'll use in the fourth world war. They'll use rocks."In spite of its weaknesses Americans still enjoy many freedoms for which its citizens need to be extremely grateful. However, unless America turns back the tide that is rapidly taking it away from its Christian moral heritage and roots, it is highly improbable that our children or our children's children will continue to be blessed by the great freedoms that America still enjoys today. And for all who live in this great land of opportunity and despise, misuse, and/or abuse it, unlike many countries, America gives them the freedom to leave! Very few do though!
May we in the West never take our freedoms for granted for, "Eternal vigilance is still the price of freedom." And above all, that includes moral vigilance. For as God's Word says, "Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a disgrace to any people."3 And as Jesus told us to remember his death for us, let us also remember all who have given their lives to give us the wonderful freedoms we know today, for there is always a great price to purchase and maintain freedom.
Suggested prayer: "Dear God, thank You especially today for all who have given their lives to keep us living in a land that knows unprecedented freedom. Help all of us in the free world awaken to our need to be eternally vigilant in moral integrity, righteous living, and trusting in You. And we pray for all those living in lands where they are under great bondage, and where the gospel is forbidden to be preached, proclaimed or followed. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen."
1. Luke 22:19 (NKJV).
2. Encyclopedia Britannica
3. Proverbs 14:34 (NIV).