Blessings of Memorial Day

“Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.  One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.” Psalm 27:3-4

As I was considering the wonderful attributes of our Sovereign Lord early this morning my mind drifted to the importance of Memorial Day and how blessed we truly are being here in America and all that He wove together in this country so that we could enjoy so many of the freedoms that over time have been taken for granted.  There are many countries in this planet where simply writing to you with the above scripture could place me in prison.  We don’t have to meet in small groups in secrecy when we worship our Triune God for fear of persecution or death.  If we are moved to support these children in Caredeux, Haiti with our time, talents and treasures; we can do so without fear of retribution.  We give thanks today for all those who gave their lives to gain and protect all the freedoms that we enjoy and also to our Heavenly Father for knitting together this country with their journeys and our own.  In 1893, at the age of 33, Katharine Lee Bates, an English professor at Wellesly College had taken a train trip to Colorado Springs, CO to teach a summer school session at Colorado College.  Several of the sights along the trip inspired her to write a poem about the beauty of America and then from high atop Pikes Peak the words of the poem would later become the hymn ‘America the Beautiful’ and I am closing with them on this Memorial Day.

“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 pilgrim feet whose stern impassioned stress a thoroughfare for freedom beat across the wilderness.  America! America!  God mend thine ev'ry flaw, confirm thy soul in self-control, thy liberty in law.  O beautiful for glorious tale of liberating strife, when valiantly for man's avail men lavish precious life.  America! America!  May God thy gold refine till all success be nobleness, and ev'ry gain divine.  O beautiful for patriot dream that sees beyond the years thine alabaster cities gleam undimmed by human tears.  America! America!  God shed His grace on thee, and crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea.”

Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown.  Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.  Amen.

May God be with you…Jay