Ordinary men and women gave their lives for freedom
This past weekend the nation celebrated Memorial Day. Many spent the holiday cooking out, traveling and attending weddings or other family gatherings. In times past, Memorial Day was known as Decoration Day and was established by the Congress in 1866 to honor all the fallen heroes of the Civil War. Families would somberly spend the day decorating the tombs and graves of the fallen.
The tradition continued through the Great War, WWII and the many other wars the country has been engaged in up to today. Now a days however, families rarely take the time to decorate graves on Memorial Day, and more likely envision the day as another three-day holiday weekend to spend in leisure.
Although there is nothing wrong with spending time with family and friends, what has seems to be ignored during those gatherings is the need to remember the men and women who gave their lives for the freedoms we now enjoy. The ultimate sacrifice any person can give another is by giving their own life for a neighbor. Let’s us never forget, nor be unappreciative ever, of the young Americans who went off to war never to see their families again. Or the families back home who will never celebrate another holiday with their loved one. Freedom does come at quite a cost.
The Architype of the Sacrifice of a life
For Christians, the theme of sacrifice should be all too familiar. It was of course sanctified by the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, which is the architype of sacrificing a life for freedom. One of the effects of the crucifixion is human beings were in bondage to sin and the death of Jesus broke the hold of enslavement. Human beings were not free, and the tyranny of evil influenced even the good persons of the world like Abraham, Isaac and Joseph. Evil is so pervasive it taints everything it touches and condemns a person to life of bondage.
Jesus freed all human beings from slavery to sin by his death. Jesus gave back to those he loved with his own life, a freedom to live as God’s children. In some ways, the Veterans who died for the country mimic the sacrifice of Jesus, by dying and fighting against the evil and tyranny of the day. Americans have been given a great gift of speaking freely, living their life in peace, and worshiping Almighty God without influence of despots or fanatical governments.
resist evil in all forms and you too will fight for freedom
When the world was threatened by aggressors across the world threating to take away basic human rights and decency, our soldiers stood up to the face of evil believing human life and prosperity are gifts of God and not a government or dictators’ whim. Their bravery and courage are shining examples to each of us to resist evil in all forms and to fight against those who wish to enslave for their own benefit and gain.
Plenty of people living now have not had to make the ultimate sacrifice nor even fight against tyrannical ideology. And how lucky and grateful should they should be, not to be crippled either physically or mentally, or both.
Christians though should not consider themselves lucky, or have dodged a bullet by not going off to war themselves. They should be very grateful and in solidarity with those who have and work in their way to fight evil the world.
Every good person needs to resist evil every time it is encountered, because it is an affront to all human freedom. Then, and only then, will we be in true solidarity with our fallen heroes and you will be doing your part in the fight for freedom, an obligation for Christians and good-willed people everywhere and every time.
One thing for certain, evil has the character of enslaving, whether that be through a sinful life, or by government policies, or some fanatic leader trying to take away the most basic right of a human being— Freedom.