For most of us Memorial Day is a day to remember that the mail doesn’t come, what time we are supposed to be at the barbeque and what we signed-up to bring. Unless you attend church or a special recognition, it would be easy to go through the whole day without remembering what the day is set aside to honor. That is, unless you are one who has lost a family member or close friend to war. In that case it is most likely impossible for you not to remember.
I’m so glad that I attend a church that helps me remember Memorial Day.Here is a prayer from the Book of Common Prayer that you may like to pray today.
O God our Father and King, this day we remember with compassion your childrenwho have lost their lives to war; we honor their memory, and give thanks fortheir sacrifice. Send your Holy Spirit to their families who grieve and bringthem comfort and solace. Let our prayers and supplications today convey the thanksof a grateful nation. And we pray that a spirit of peace and forbearance willprevail among the nations of the world that one day your Son, Jesus Christ, wouldbe known, worshipped, and obeyed as the Lord of All and Prince of Peace. Amen.
We set aside this day for the nation and families to mourn and honor those whohave given their lives to gain our freedom. Those who have offered the ultimatesacrifice for their country deserve honor and recognition. Remembering theirsacrifice is our little part in recognizing the significance of what they havegiven.
Perhaps we forget what we are asked to remember on Memorial Day because rememberingbrings pain. In spite of the sadness, we can celebrate with hope because theultimate War has been won by Jesus Christ. Every day should be kind of a spiritualMemorial Day to remember the One who has saved us from our sinful reality thatincludes the tragic death war brings.
Jesus was well aware of our problem with remembering what is most important. That is why He set up a sacrament that would help us remember the War He fought and won for us by the sacrifice of His body and blood. In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me." For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes(1 Corinthians 11:25-26).
Take some time on Memorial Day to remember those you know personally who have given their lives in defense of your country, or those warriors who have died in battle you’ve only heard about. Also remember the One who brings hope to Memorial Day, the One whose reign will mean ultimate peace on earth and end to war forever in His Kingdom. Have a memorable Memorial Day.