Friday, May 27, 2011

No Greater Love

Today's Gospel (John 15: 12-17) contains what is probably the most appropriate passage of Scripture as we begin the Memorial Day Weekend here in the USA. "No one has greater love than this", say the Lord: "to lay down one’s life for one’s friends."
Sadly, most people will see this weekend as a time to relax, enjoy family and friends, have a cookout,maybe go to the beach, but will  not stop for even a minute to consider the reason for Memorial Day. It is a time to pause and honor those men and women who gave their lives for you and me as they served in the Armed Forces of our country. Oh, there will be parades and you will probably see veterans in uniform, if not in person then at least on TV news reports. But we need to focus on the reason all of this is happening. These brave veterans want us to remember the ultimate sacrifice that their "comrades in arms" made. Indeed, veterans know that they are the lucky ones who made it home. They are simply asking us to realize that we are the really lucky ones, who had others willing to "lay down their life" for us.
My suggestion for you this weekend is very simple. Go to a cemetery. Get out and walk around for a few minutes. Stop at those graves where you see an American flag (our wonderful vets make sure they are placed on the graves for Memorial Day). And say a pray of thanksgiving, asking God to bless these men and women who served our country. You may even be able to tell from the dates on the tombstone that some of them probably gave their lives for our country. Imagine what they may have looked like. Imagine what kind of life they sacrificed for you. Imagine the loved ones who were left behind. Imagine how much they loved their country (you and I). And be grateful. No greater love...

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