Today is Veterans Day, the day we take time to honor the men and women who have served our country in the military. We recognize every day men and women who should be honored as heroes. They are the ones, from the battles of Concord and Valley Forge, to the deserts of Iraq and Afghanistan, who have won and are keeping our freedoms. They are the ones who are on the front lines keeping America strong and safe. They are called of God to defend our nation.
The book of Ecclesiastes tells us “There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven – … a time for war, and a time for peace.” (Eccl. 3:1, 8b NASB) When our country is attacked from outsiders, as we were at Pearl Harbor in December 1941 and again by terrorists on September 11, 2001, that is a time for war. When innocent people are slaughtered by evil regimes and need our help, that is a time for war. On all of these occasions, American men and women answered the call and served where their country sent them. No one desires or loves war, especially not those who are there; but those who do have to fight, appreciate our freedoms more because they know firsthand the great cost.
Both my father and my father-in-law were WWII Veterans. They were young men who put their lives on hold and served their country. They neither one talked very much about their experiences unless pressed to talk about it. Most veterans of that era are humbled by any recognition and don’t consider themselves heroes.
My husband served in the Navy during Viet Nam and all of us baby boomers remember too well the protests and the unrest our nation was in during that time. The saddest part of that is the protesters were hurting the very people who were fighting for their right to assemble and protest! They were unwitting pawns of the enemy. Then when the soldiers and sailors came home, they were neglected and dishonored. Let us not make the same mistakes again.
Pray for our troops, for their safety and for their success. Pray for their families at home. Pray for their healing when they return, physical, mental and emotional. And most of all let us never forget to give thanks for men and women willing to give themselves for our country.
Peace and blessings.