It’s Veteran’s Day, a time to pause and remember the service and sacrifice of those who have fought for our freedom. Take a moment today to thank a veteran.
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
2 Timothy 4:7 – NIV
It’s a big day for me. My son Jonathan is coming home! Making the long trek from Montana, he plans to stay for a couple of weeks, and his mother is thrilled at the prospect.
I have spent the last couple of weeks getting ready. There were projects to finish so I could spend quality time with him. There were cookies to bake and haystacks to make. That particular chocolate treat is his favorite, so of course, I had to stock the freezer. I had to get ready!
This homecoming makes me think about another homecoming, a precious memory from my childhood. It had been a long year filled with sleepless nights and strained faces. My mother tried to hide her fears, blink away her tears, but worry was the uninvited houseguest we couldn’t seem to get rid of. At seven years old, I didn’t understand it all. All I knew was that Vietnam was a long way away, and a year was a long time to wait.
But on that chilly fall day, the long wait was almost over. I could hardly contain my excitement as I skipped through the rooms of our rental house, each room adorned with ribbons of red, white and blue. I paused at the front door to admire my handcrafted sign that read, “Welcome Home, Daddy!”
Later that day, when my father stepped off the plane in his Army greens, his grin was a mile wide. Crossing the tarmac to meet us, he threw his arms open wide for Mama and me. After a tight hug and sweet kiss for Mama, Daddy lifted me up and gave me a twirl. My feet were soaring through the air, and so was my heart. My daddy was home!
To all the veterans who left their families headed for parts unknown, let me say, “Thank you! Thank you for your service.”
On this Veteran’s Day, I want you to know that I remember. I remember your sacrifice.
You responded to the call of duty, accepted the hardships, made the best of horrific situations. You missed the family meals, the bedtime prayers, the good morning hugs. You missed the touch of your sweetheart, and the comfort of your home. You weren’t there for the baseball games and dance recitals. You missed the delivery room and the graduation stage.
You sacrificed so I don’t have to. You fought so that I could live free.
I can’t repay you for what you did. I can’t make up for what you missed. I can’t give you back what you gave up. All I can give you is my admiration and my thanks. The words are not enough, but I say them anyway. “Thank you!”
Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
2 Peter 1:2 – NIV
O Lord God Almighty, we give thanks for our veterans. We thank You for the men and women who serve and have served in our Armed Forces. We thank You for their dedication, their courage, their sacrifice. We thank You for their families who sacrifice their comfort and convenience for the sake of their loved ones’ service. We pray Your comfort and peace for those that have lost loved ones in the line of duty, and for those who are still dealing with the wounds of war. O Lord, protect those who serve and their families, and lead us all in the pathway of peace.