Monday, May 28, 2007

A Day of Remembrance in the US

"INSIGHT on Freedom"
Memorial Day, 2007
A Day of Remembrance in the US

Well, today is Memorial Day in the US. A day we have set aside as a day to remembered and celebrate our war dead and to honor those men and women who fought in all the wars of the United States. Here in the American South we celebrate the Confederate Dead as well as the US Dead. After all, Memorial Day began as a Southern Holiday to honor the Confederate dead by cleaning their gravesites and cemeteries.

A couple of years back, I had the great good fortune to speak to a church congregation, as their featured Memorial Day speaker. The passion for their lost soldiers lies just beneath the surface. As the names poured out, from the members of the congregation, to be remembered, it was astounding to feel the longing, the love, the loss, felt by those folks as they called aloud the names of their dead soldiers, all the way back from the Revolutionary War, which the US fought with Great Britain, to win our freedom.

We don’t celebrate war in the US, but we DO celebrate our war dead. Christ said: “Greater love hath no man than this... that a man lay down his life for a friend". The war dead of this country did that. It would be impossible to honor their sacrifice too much.

I remember, today, my uncle who died in his ancestral homeland of Belgium, during the Second World War, fighting to free them from the grip of Hitler’s troops. He is buried in Europe… somewhere. I think of all the cousins who fought in all the wars since the War Between the States forward. And, I think of my Great Grandfather, who fought in the 17th Regiment of South Carolina Infantry, Company “I”, along with a slew of great uncles, cousins and such. Some of them never made it back home to their loved ones.

That’s what this day is about. Remembering them, and remembering that freedom is not free. We pay for it. We pay for it in blood. But, it is so precious... millions of Americans have willingly lain down their lives to secure it for the generations yet unborn.

So, today, remember. Take a few minutes to remember them. Call out their names aloud; speak their names into the blessed free air around you, for they paid for it.



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1 comment:

Frank said...

Thak you!!!!!!