Pray for Veterans, part 1

April 30, 2010 at 1:22 pm | Posted in encouragement, pray, Veterans | Leave a comment
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Sometimes we Americans really take for granted the privileges of freedom. We also struggle with the truth that freedoms we have and most other countries want were bought at a price. Today I want to encourage my readers to pray for the brave men and women who serve in our various branches of the military. Let’s remember those who are either active duty or retired and take the time to intercede for them and their families.

Memorial Day is coming up and it is an important holiday. When I was a little kid my family used to go Bedford Ohio to watch the parade in the morning. We would go and stand in front of the Bedford Cemetery on Broadway to watch the parade. I remember a lot of people showing up for the parade. We would wave flags and clap as the parade went by. My grandmother would put flags and flowers on my grandfather’s and uncle’s graves. Now my uncle puts flowers and flags on those graves and the grave of my father also. Some traditions are worth repeating and communicating to coming generations.

When I was younger I did not understand all of this. I didn’t understand why some people were crying. I didn’t understand why some people were putting their right hand over their heart. I didn’t understand why most people clapped and cheered as the Veterans of Foreign Wars went by. I didn’t understand why all the time was spent just standing in front of a grave. As I type this I can still see it in the pictures of my mind. It is not just something I imagined; I experienced the importance of Memorial Day.

I cannot say that I fully understand what all those men and women went through because I never served in the military. Me and two of my friends registered for the draft when we were seniors in high school. But I think the draft stopped the same year so none of us were drafted. Some readers are too young to know anything about the draft. Birthdates were drawn lottery style and if your number came up, you were in the Army. You also had the option of joining one of the other branches of the military too.

As I got older and was able to do what I wanted to do and go where I wanted to go, I began to understand freedom and its privileges a little better. After God saved me and called me into the ministry and I began to counsel men who had served in Vietnam and I realized how little I knew about the military life and being in combat. So I began to learn and read and ask questions and listen and not judge. I had fewer answers and a lot more questions.

There is still a lot that I do not understand. The older I get the more thankful I am for GRACE. I may even have more questions and fewer answers to why some people go through what they go through. I recently read Daily Strength for the Battle by Chaplain (Col.) Scott McChyrstal (ret.) and I highly recommend it. You can read my review on my Book Review page. If you know of someone who served or is currently serving in the military I suggest you get it and send it to them.

But even more important than that is to pray for them. So let’s pray for the brave men and women who are currently serving and for those who have served in our country’s military. You can personalize these prayer points with specific names if you know someone or pray in a general way. Let’s pray for:

1.      Their protection, spiritually, emotionally and physically.

2.      Their family’s protection and for God’s provision in their lives.

3.      Many to come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

4.      The many godly chaplains to do their ministry in the power of the Holy Spirit.

5.      The families that have had loved ones die to experience God’s comfort, mercy and presence as they grieve (2 Corinthians 1:3).

6.      The general public to appreciate what these men and women do to serve their country.

7.      The healing of broken bodies and emotions because of what they have gone through.

8.      That no matter what the circumstances they have experienced, they would turn to God and not away from Him.

9.      However else God may lead you to intercede for someone.

Thank you for praying. Your prayers make a difference and they are important. Someone may not know you are praying for them down here, but Almighty God knows you are praying. God responds to His people’s prayers. Stay faithful and hopeful!

Much GRACE and peace to you,

Bill (a fellow-laborer)

Romans 15:13; John 15:7

A “veteran” – whether active duty, discharged, retired or reserve – is someone who, at one point in his life, wrote a blank check made payable to the “United States of America,” for an amount “up to and including his/her life.”

–         Anonymous

–         Daily Strength for the Battle, p.12.

____________________________

“The nation that makes a great distinction between its scholars and its warriors will have its thinking done by cowards and its fighting done by fools.”

–         Thucydides

If I Knew Then by Brian Willis, p. 59.

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