To Love & To Lead: Staff Discussions

More than a barbecue

Posted on May 27, 2016 by Roger Goins

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The national holiday that we call Memorial Day was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.   People have been memorializing the sacrifice of others since the beginning of time.   As Americans, we especially love to have holidays in memory of those who have passed on.  We also love to name buildings, streets, cities, and counties after people who have made the ultimate sacrifice.  Sadly for most of us, these memorials eventually become little more than a street sign or an opportunity to sleep in and barbecue.

 

 Laying down our lives for others is a biblical virtue.  Jesus told his disciples that they should love each other as He loved them and then He laid down His life as a symbol of His love.   Laying down your life for someone or something other than yourself is actually the greatest virtue—it is the essence of the Gospel.  Jesus laid down His life for us.  We can choose to remember and accept His sacrifice or we can forget.  We can also choose to remember the many Americans who have laid down their lives so that we can live free in the greatest nation in the world.  It seems a little unappreciative to only remember those sacrifices on Memorial Day and Good Friday.   Here’s a thought, why don’t we live our lives in a way that is worthy of their sacrifices?  I have seen “Saving Private Ryan” many times and I still get choked up at the last scene.  Ryan is in the Normandy American Cemetery and at the grave of a man who died so he could live.   He finally gets to ask the question that has tormented him for his entire life, "Was I worth it?"  As Christians, we don’t even have to ask that question.  We know that God loved us enough to send His Son; that Jesus loved us enough to lay down His life; and that we are worthy of His sacrifice simply because He chose us.  Now that is something worth celebrating every day!

 

I’ll see you Sunday—but not Monday

Roger



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