Remembering . . .

memorial-day-header-2017-desktop-2Today America remembers. Tears will be shed at graves where the bodies of soldiers gone too soon from this earth lie.  We will try to find meaning in the sorrow with speeches, salutes, and songs. Flags will flutter; the red, white, and blue stirring us with gratitude for this nation that is our home. And still some of us will wonder at the absurdity of war.

I find this day one of mixed emotions.  While I am ever so thankful for those in uniform who defend a way of life I cherish, I am equally sorrowful that human beings insist on violence as the solution to disputes.  In history there are virtually no extended times when bloodshed was absent this world.

Even as I sing  “America, God shed His grace on thee,” my prayer will be for the coming of the Prince of Peace.  Isaiah, inspired by the Spirit, spoke of that Day.  “He will judge between the nations and will settle disputes for many peoples. They will beat their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not take up sword against nation, nor will they train for war anymore.” (Isaiah 2:4, NIV)

As citizens of both the nation and the Kingdom of God, let us give thanks for freedoms protected and pray fervently that war will be no more.

Make this a prayer for our nation today.

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain.\
For purple mountain majesties\
Above the fruited plain.

America, America!
God shed His grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea.

O beautiful for heroes proved
in liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life.

America, America,
may God thy gold refine,
‘Till all success be nobleness
And ev’ry gain divine.

Katharine Lee Bates | Samuel Augustus Ward
© Words: Public Domain

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