Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

How are you spending your Memorial Day? Cookouts, at the pool, at the "big sale"...these are just a few of the fun Memorial Day pass times.

I remember when I was first dating my husband, we attended an outdoor concert for either Memorial Day or 4th of July. I was chatting with a girlfriend, when suddenly this man I was dating elbowed me right in the side. I glared at him - "The nerve!" - when I noticed he had his hand over his heart. I listened a moment and realized the National Anthem was playing. I could tell this meant a lot to him, so I joined in, not realizing what the big deal was.

Moving ahead 3 years we were married and I was unpacking boxes, I found various medals and certificates. This man I married was a United States Military Academy at West Point Graduate, and a Vietnam Vet. Now I understood a bit more why he was so sentimental over the National Anthem.

After 7 years of marriage, we attended his West Point Reunion. It was fun to visit the grounds and see all the "pomp and circumstance" of the Military Academy. That evening they played a funny video montage of pictures of the guys in school. Then they played the second video. While the haunting tune of "Mansion of the Lord" played, photo after photo of their classmates who had been killed in action filled the screen. Every man in the room was in tears. As one picture came across the screen, my husband choked out "he was my room-mate." My husband's own room-mate had been killed in action. I never knew.

This Memorial Day, stop and consider what Memorial Day really is. And if you hear the National Anthem; stop, listen, put your hand over your heart. Don't be so cavalier as I once was. Remember the soldiers who have given their life for us.

"Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13

This is not the video of my husband's fallen classmates,
but the same song and an equally moving video.

To fallen soldiers let us sing
Where no rockets fly nor bullets wing
Our broken brothers let us bring
To the Mansions of the Lord
No more bleeding, no more fight
No prayers pleading through the night
Just divine embrace, eternal light
To the Mansions of the Lord.
Where no mothers cry and no children weep
We will stand and guard though the angels sleep
Through the ages safely keep
The Mansions of the Lord.


The Patterson 5 said...

Thank you for showing us what today is really all about so we may keep our hearts reflecting on the many sacrifices made on our behalf.

Sue J said...

This is a touching and loving tribute. Thank you for sharing and for allowing us who don't have as clear a picture of what that sacrifice is all about to understand just a little bit more.

Like being a mom, unless you have served in that capacity, you just don't know everything that goes into the role. And it's huge.

Thanks again! And you and patterson5 were on the same page with your scriptures today; no surprise!

Sonya said...

Thank you for this post. I had gone through the entire day so busy that I hadn't stopped to even think of the meaning of Memorial day. We'll be talking about it with the kids tonight during devotions. I needed this reminder.

HisPrincess said...

We call it ANZAC day here in Australia. ANZAC stands for Australian New Zealand Army Corps. Traditionally ANZAC day was to remember the fateful battle at Gallipoli where thousands of young Australian and New Zealand soldiers were killed in world war one. With very few of those original soldiers remaining with us ANZAC day has become more about remembering all Australian soldiers who have served and are still serving to protect us. Its so important for us to remember those who have sacrificed so that we may enjoy our freedom.
That was a lovely post and a touching video.

My ADHD Me said...

I meant to respond to this yesterday but got caught up, as you know, on other computer related projects. But I HAD to let you know that I LOVED this blog. I have SO much respect for our military and even so, on Memorial Day, I got caught up in no school for kids, laundry to do, what's for dinner etc. Thanks for reminding everyone what's important.
And please tell your husband "Thank You"---really, from the bottom of my heart.

Valerie said...

Over the Memorial Day weekend, my brother was injured by a land mine in Iraq. He's fine, but it was a reminder of the danger he and all of our soldiers face as part of their daily routine.

Thanks for the post and the amazing hymn.