I wrote most of this on Nov. 12th, the day after most of the world observed Veterans' Day.
We are asked to 'Remember those living and dead who fought in the wars'.
It originated after WWI ended in the signing of the Armistice Nov. 11, 1918.
Several wars since then have added thousands of reasons why we should observe Veterans' Day...or as some call it 'Remembrance Day'.
I was proud to put our flag out and think back on WWII when my older brother Bryce served in Patton's Army in Europe.
We have a picture of Bryce's outfit as they were crossing the Rhine River on the Remagen Bridge at night, heading into Berlin to end the war.
German flares lit up the night like it was daytime.
I was in the Army during the Korean War, then later we went as missionaries to Korea.
We arrived there 7 yrs. after the war, so we saw the ravages of war everywhere!
Now it seems that we are again in what could be called a World War.
It demands our prayers, perseverance and patience, for it may last...
(in some ways in some places on earth) until the Lord comes.
I am not a pessimist, but when it comes to wars of idealogies like today...
only God and my relationship and fellowship with Him can keep me optimistic.
It is spiritual warfare and God's Word says much about this!
The military has kept our country free, but only Jesus gives abundant life now...
and eternal life to come.
Kathleen Parker's editorial in the Daily Oklahoman this week, gives us a reason for Thanksgiving. She contrasted the Civil War in Iraq of Sunnis and Shiites with the election held in the United States.
"And now, ladies and gentlemen, a final round of applause for the real winners of the mid-term elections: the American people and Democracay!
Whether their candidates won or lost, Americans can't but feel grateful for a nation and a system of government that allows us every few years to peaceably re-invent ourselves.
On Election Day, no one had to step over a pool of blood to get to the polls.
No one had to risk a sniper's bullet or an improvised explosive device to cast a ballot.
No one had to worry that sore losers might drag 'traitors' from their cars for preferring a different approach to governance.
It is a good thing for the rest of the world to witness as Americans shift directions with civility and pledges of unity. Makes you proud to be an American!"
Yet as meaningful as that is, it cannot compare to the privilege that belongs to us when we observe the Lord's Supper and live daily for Him. We are obeying Christ's command that we remember His death (Luke 22:19) and to do it until He comes again.
(I Cor. 11:26)
We thank God for all who have sacrificed so much....even their lives.....for our freedoms!
We need to remember this often, but how much greater is the freedom that Christ gives through His Sacrifice!
This should cause us to live for Him. Lord, forgive our forgetfulness!
To be free is man's consuming passion....
To make us free is God's compassionate desire.
I like what S. M. Lockridge said in one of his sermons on
'Facing the Future and Spiritual Warfare':
"If you want your life to be serviceable in the Kingdom of our Lord....
you've got to start at Abraham's tent and get you some faith.
You've got to visit Moses at Midian and get you some preparation.
You've got to go up on a mountain where Elijah is and get you some fire.
You've got to go to Job's house and get you some patience.
You've got to go to Paul's dungeon and get you some determination and missionary zeal.
You've got to plow through The Word of God and stop on the Jericho Road long enough for the good Samaritan to teach you how to love your neighbor.
Then, you've got to go up to Calvary and get you some love....
and go down in the empty tomb and get you some Eternal Life.
And then, go somewhere in your secret closet and mix it all up in Prayer.
Then your life WILL be serviceable in the Kingdom of our Lord."
Hebrews 4:14-16 speaks of Spiritual Warfare through Prayer:
"Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the Heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not a high priest who can not be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need."
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