DayBreaks for 5/30/16 – Remember Their Sacrifices

DayBreaks for 5/30/16 – Remember Their Sacrifices

Romans 13:7 (NIV) – Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

It is Memorial Day, 2016, here in the United States. To many, it is the “unofficial” start of summer. Many go camping or start vacations if their kids are out of school. The weather is warm and families get together. But let’s get first things first, can we?

Some seem to confuse this day with Veteran’s Day….both are very special and commemorate people to whom we owe our thanks. But Memorial day is set aside to remember those who gave their lives as a sacrifice for those they loved and cared for. We cannot possibly thank them, or their families, too much. We should be forever grateful for the men and women who laid down their lives or our freedom. Their sacrifice will, and should, be remembered and their memories honored.

As we worshipped on Sunday, I couldn’t help but think of Jesus. He, too, laid down his life for us in the ultimate battle: the struggle between good and evil. And even as he rose, one day he will bring life to not only believers but all those who have died throughout all of history.

It is right for us to remember those who didn’t love their own lives to dearly to sacrifice it for those they loved more than life. That describes the fallen soldiers of our country, but also our Lord. 

Let us honor them all today as they deserve…but let us honor our Lord above all.

PRAYER: Jesus, we today remember the families of those who died for our freedom. We pray you bring the comfort and warm memories to the loved and lost. May we honor you for your sacrifice above all!  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Copyright 2016, Galen C. Dalrymple. All rights reserved.

 

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DayBreaks for 5/25/15 – They Watched Them Die

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DayBreaks for 5/25/15: They Watched Them Die

“Many have been there.  Your grandfather, parents, perhaps aunts, uncles, cousins, sons and daughters – they were there.  They saw friends killed by the enemy.  It changed them. To see people die is a horrific thing.

“Nothing can erase that from your mind.  No one can understand it fully unless you have been there.  I have not been there, but I have heard the stories.

“They knew that it was inevitable that some would die.  In every war, some have died.  One a day like today, we honor those who have died standing up for others.  Perhaps you know people who know people who died in wars.  Maybe you know people who died.  We grieve with you as you grieve with us.  Wars are horrific.  In every war, some have died.

“Think today about the current wars and the next ones.

“There will be more of this: more killing and more people we know who know people who will give their lives as an ultimate sacrifice.  It will not end for a long time.  We don’t know how long, and we don’t know how many more will die.  It is heartbreaking and depressing.

“What is our hope?  In every war, some have died, except in one war.  In that war, only One died.  His Father watched him die.  He died, so that those who believe would have life, the life that is eternal.  All who believe have life, even after death.

“He is our only hope for ending all wars.  How will he do it and when?  We don’t know.  In the meantime, we have to live as followers of Him and think deep thoughts about overt and hidden wars, weapons of mass destruction, nuclear arms and conflict.

“Today, on this Memorial Day weekend, we remember and honor those who have died in all the wars to protect us, and we remember the One who have His life to end all wars.

“To those of you who watched them die, I want to say we are thankful that you are still here.  Don’t let us forget your friends.” – Author Unknown

Remember well this day those who no longer walk among us.

PRAYER: Thank you, Prince of Peace, for those who also stand watch over us and protect us.  Thank you for their courage and their sacrifice, and we pray you comfort all who have loved them and lost them.  Thank you for ultimately winning the war against war and we long to see that become reality. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

© 2015, Galen C. Dalrymple.

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DayBreaks for 05/30/11 – No Greater Love

In honor of those who died for us...

Jesus said it: Greater love hath no man than to lay down his life for his friends.  Those have become for many, a rule to live by and to die by.

Today we observe Memorial Day – it is a special time to honor men and women who took those words literally and then they lay down to die in service to their country.  Hal Moore, the colonel who led the U.S. troops in their first major battle in Vietnam (immortalized in the movie We Were Soldiers), said, that soldiers don’t die for freedom the words of presidents, or for apple pie or even for mom…they die for their comrades, for their love for one another.  Isn’t that what prompts one soldier to throw his body on a hand grenade, absorbing the punishing fragments of metal in his/her own flesh in order to save their fellow soldiers?  At that point, concepts such as freedom are not on the top of their thinking…but the life of the person next to them is.

I don’t know if I have, or ever have had, that kind of love except perhaps for my own family.  I suspect that one never really knows until that split-second moment arises and an instantaneous decision must be made.  There isn’t time to weigh the various options and alternatives – there is only time to act.  Perhaps there is a blessing in the quickness of it as there is not time for agonizing, protracted reflection and thought.

It makes what Jesus did all the more amazing.  He had eternity to contemplate his selfless act prior to its arrival.  And when the hand grenade (figuratively speaking, of course) landed in the foxhole where he was, he looked around and saw not friends, but enemies – those who wanted him to die, but not for the reason he chose to die.  They wanted him dead and gone so they could go on with their own affairs.  He wanted to die to save them.  And he did.

It is a special day.  I have never known someone physically who would up giving their life specifically for me, nor (obviously) have I ever done that for another.  It is a day for honoring those who gave their lives for their friends…and that includes not just soldiers in the military, but soldiers in the army of the Lord whose faith still shines as a beacon for us who were to follow, and it includes the Lord, our dearest friend of all.  Honor them all this day…and give thanks for them.

PRAYER: For such selfless love of our Lord and fellow man, we can only say we thank you and honor you this day!  Let us learn to love so deeply and widely that we would do the same if the need arises.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

COPYRIGHT 2011, Galen C. Dalrymple  ><}}}”>

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