Thank You, Veterans

Why do we celebrate Veteran’s Day? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

There’s no such thing as a free lunch. Even if someone gives you a gift, someone had to pay for it. Even if it was something someone gave of their own, they sacrificed something. Perhaps they just gave it up or gave away some income they could have got from the gift given.

Today, we honor a gift that has been given to us. Well, it hasn’t been given so much as preserved for us. Our Constitution does not give us a single right. It instead recognizes the rights that we have by virtue of being human beings. It was written to limit the government as to what they could to the citizens.

Our veterans are the ones that are still around that have stood in the gap for us against those that oppose us and would seek to overpower us in some way. The most vivid example we saw of this is 9/11. For many of us that day, our world had a crack put in our security. We are not a nation that cannot be attacked. We definitely can be.

Veterans are the people who have chosen to go and fight somehow on our behalf. Not all fight in the mainlines. Being a veteran doesn’t just mean picking up a gun and going to the battlefield. Some people stay behind and handle medical duties or logistics or anything like that. All give of themselves.

Patton is said to have said years ago that war is Hell and these people willingly go to face Hell. They leave their families behind for a time and they have no guarantee that they will ever see them again. There’s always the hope, but it is never fully known. When they kiss their spouses or children good-bye before they fly off somewhere, it could be the last time that they ever do that.

They sleep in beds away from the ones that they love. They miss birthday parties and Christmases and graduations and perhaps even wedding ceremonies at times. They have to live in conditions that are not the ones they really want eating meals they don’t really choose in a country that they are not familiar with.

Why?

Because they think that there is something greater out there than what they want. They are willing to sacrifice of themselves because they believe there is something greater than themselves out there. They want to make sure that what they value over here lasts, even if they don’t know they’ll get to live to enjoy it.

Every single one of them is a hero then.

My wife got a habit in me and I still follow it. If I am out in public and see a veteran, though this also applies to police officers, I thank them for their service. If I had money and saw them at a restaurant, I would always ask to pay for their meals. These people could use our thanks as well since people don’t regularly do jobs just to get thanks, although some do, but it is always appreciated to be thanked for the service that you do.

Thank you Veterans, for all that you’ve done for us. You have been willing to make the sacrifice and thankfully, you didn’t have to. May today you be honored wherever you go and may you be honored everyday.

In Christ,
Nick Peters

Thanks To The Fallen

Are we taking the time to remember today? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

I could have done a book plunge today, but I will hold off for tomorrow. Today is Memorial Day after all, and I want to write something to honor those who are no longer here. It’s sad as I think about it that the people I want to honor the most with this post are the ones who cannot read it. Hopefully, those who can read it will live their lives in honor of the ones who can’t.

As I write this, I sit in my apartment without fear of death from opposing forces. I will drive to my in-laws with my wife today and I won’t be worried about driving through enemy territory and having to dodge bullets and such. I will have regular meals today and I will be able to get a hot shower this morning and sleep in a warm bed tonight. I will do all of this with my wife of nearly seven years by my side.

The fallen don’t have that.

They died in fact not sleeping in the beds that I do and woke up every day knowing they could be walking into enemy territory. They didn’t enjoy the meals that I am able to enjoy at home. Some of the men overseas might have had girlfriends that they were writing to back home. They will never get to marry those girlfriends. They will never be husbands or fathers or eventually grandfathers.

Those families will always have an empty chair at Thanksgiving. Christmas will always be a reminder of what was lost. Mother’s Day could be a day of sadness for some Moms as Father’s Day could be for some Dads. Children are supposed to weep at the graves of their parents. It’s not meant to be the other way around.

Why is this? Because there are some wicked people in this world. Because war sadly happens at times. No. I am not a pacifist. At the same time, war is not anything we should celebrate. It is a tragedy that it happens. It is a tragedy that the innocent die because of the sins of the wicked.

My wife has been working lately on being more thankful. On this day, should I not be thankful? Should I not realize that all that I have is a gift. Whenever I kiss my wife, I am doing something that some man will never get a chance to because of his early death. I get to enjoy a meal that they won’t and I get to sleep in a warm bed while they are in the sleep of death.

So if this is what is going on, then why are we celebrating? Why are we having barbecues today and not sitting around in mourning? Why? Because I think the fallen would want us to celebrate. They died so we could be free. They want us to celebrate and appreciate that freedom. Don’t think I say this for some benefit of my own. I don’t really care for food. I don’t eat burgers or hot dogs or any of that stuff. I’m just not a food person.

Still, the best way to honor a gift you have been given many times is to live enjoying it. Here we have been given the gift of freedom. That freedom has come at a price. Just visit a place like Arlington Cemetery and you can see the price of freedom. We should celebrate it, but not take it for granted. Every day we have is a gift. Every moment with our loved ones is a gift. Every blessing we have over here is a gift.

To the mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters and everyone else who has lost someone, my great sympathies for your loss, but also thank you. Thank you for helping produce someone of such a caliber in virtue that they were willing to die for people they would never even know. You have suffered a great loss. Nothing I say here could ever truly make up for your loss. Until eternity, there will always be a hole in your hearts missing that loved one, as it should be. They should never be forgotten.

And to those fighting right now and being in the service, today we honor the fallen, but let it never be that we forget your current sacrifice. I always try to thank a policeman or someone with military experience when I see them. I have the greatest respect for people who have lived their lives willing to take bullets, so the rest of us don’t have to live with that fear. When you in the military go out to fight our battles, remember the fallen and honor them with your service.

Happy Memorial Day everyone. God bless you and God bless our troops and may God honor the fallen.

In Christ,
Nick Peters