What is a hero? Google defines hero as:
“a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.”
Today, we’re talking about heroes…
Remember the Heroes
How often do we take time to pause and remember our heroes? It’s to our shame and detriment that we don’t take time to do this more often. Memorial Day gives us the perfect opportunity. Winston Churchill once said, “A nation that forgets its past has no future.”
The Bible has much to say about the importance of remembering.
One example set forth in God’s word about the importance of remembering is that of “Ebenezer stones”. These stones of remembrance were to remind the children of Israel what they had been through and, most importantly, what God had done.
In an article from billygraham.org, Anne Graham Lotz writes,
“Samuel used stones as a memorial when God’s people wanted to remember His goodness and faithfulness. First Samuel 7:12 says that when God enabled the Israelites to defeat the Philistines, the Prophet Samuel ‘took a stone and … named it Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far has the Lord helped us.”‘”
“Joshua also used stones to help God’s people remember His goodness. After wandering in the wilderness for 40 years, the Israelites experienced the power of God to roll back the waters of the Jordan River, enabling them to cross over and take possession of the Promised Land. Joshua then commanded them to build a memorial of stones as a public testimony of what God had done for them … stones that would remind them to keep on praising Him.”
Because of the Heroes
I come from a military family. I believe this is one of the reasons that veterans have such a special place in my heart. My grandfather flew fighters in the Marines during WWII and my father is a retired fighter pilot of the United Stares Air Force. I’m so thankful for this rich heritage. However, our heritage starts even farther back.
Our founding fathers were heroes. As we’re learning through our Bullet-Point Bios, they fought for the freedom to live out their beliefs without fear of harassment. Not only this, but through God’s help, they created the most free nation the world has ever known and they passed this freedom on to us.
The oldest generation of veterans still living today are from WWII. Once again, these soldiers were fighting for freedom.
Two epitaphs from John Maxwell Edmonds, an English classicist and poet, provide a sober reminder:
“Went the day well?
We died and never knew.
But, well or ill,
Freedom, we died for you.”
“When you go home, tell them of us and say
For their tomorrow, we gave our today.”
From more recent history we’ve had soldiers in Korea, Vietnam, the Golf War, Afghanistan, Iraq, and other areas in the Middle-East. Some of these wars have been shrouded in politics, disagreement, and debate. However, regardless of any of this, these soldiers answered the call of duty and served their county. All of these soldiers are heroes and they all deserve our respect and gratitude. Shame on us if we give them anything less.
Stand with the Heroes
Many have given their all so that we can be free today. What are we doing to preserve these freedoms? What have we given?
We live in a self-centered age. We’re busy, we don’t like to get out of our comfort zone. There are so many different things competing for our attention. It’s time that we stand back and look at the big picture. Think about these questions:
-Where are we headed as individuals?
-Where are we headed as a nation??
-What kind of heritage do we want to leave for future generations?
Our founders thought about us. We need to think about the generations coming after us. In 200 years, will there be an America? Will our posterity look back and say that we gave our all to preserve for them the freedoms that we enjoy today? Or will they say that we dropped the ball and gave in? At the very least, let’s act in such a way that it leaves no doubt in our posterity’s mind that we gave our all.
Don’t be afraid to stand up and defend the rights that our founders laid out in our nation’s governing documents – those rights that soldiers have given their lives for so that we can be free today. We still have soldiers fighting – don’t forget them!!! Pray for our service members and their families.
In a recent religious liberty webcast from the Family Research Council, Archbishop William E. Lori stated,
“The best way to keep our freedom is to use our freedom.”
In conclusion, I think a poster from WWII sums it up well – Americans will always fight for liberty!