For Next Year

I had just started first grade when my teacher pulled us all over to the carpet and explained to us that school was over for the day. I learned it was closed because some planes had crashed into some big buildings in New York City. She was crying, and that scared me.

This was the first time since December 7, 1941 that American soil had been attacked. What proceeded was one of the most memorable months of my life. When I got home that day the same thing was on every channel: the towers burning and collapsing. Many lives were lost and families broken that day. Amazing stories can be told about taking the day off, or being in the other side of the Pentagon at the perfect moment. On September 11, 2001 the people in the Northeast and around the country were reminded how precious life is.

Whether you agree with the declaration of war or not, men and women rose up once again to fight for our freedom. I will never forget that day or the policemen, firemen, coast guard, military, and many others that worked so hard to protect us.. Every public service worker daily performs an activity that makes life in this country liveable. Those who fight today are paid for their work just like the elementary school teacher, and do not consider their work to be incredibly heroic, but, rather, their duty and vocation. We set aside a day to recognize their willingness to risk their lives, and often give their lives to protect our way of life.    

November 11th—Veterans Day—is an important day. Whether you love America more than the air you breathe or you simply breathe the relatively free air as a resident in the states, you are benefiting from the service of many brave men and women. We aren’t all waving the flag or singing the anthem constantly, but we do pray to our God in the open and educate ourselves from a particular worldview with little to no persecution. America is by no means God’s Country, but we experience many blessings beside our freedom to worship him—all because those he has called to govern our country have made it their vocation to protect these freedoms.

I am a sophomore at Covenant, and each November 11th I have hoped for and expected something like a moment of silence for our veterans, a guest veteran  to speak of his or her experience, or a prayer of thanks for their service. I do not recall anything being done. While our veterans are ordinary people performing duties that the Lord has called them to, I believe it is important to honor the fact that they actively and willingly risk their lives for the freedoms I often take for granted. I am not asking for the day off, or anything much. A moment of silence, or recognition, or an open invitation to the veterans in the area to come and be recognized would be an honorable way to remember their service.

On December 7th my grandfather sat in his classroom and listened to the president describe on the radio the havoc that had befallen the state of Hawaii. Two years later he lied about his age so that he might fight for his country at the earliest opportunity. Whatever issues we may have with the problems that plague this country and how they are dealt with, I believe it is a beautiful thing that the freedom to try and correct those problems, and how they are dealt with is so fiercely protected. This year November 11th falls on a Wednesday. Might we honor those who should not be forgotten in Chapel that day?