If you’ve heard it once, you’ve heard it said several hundred times:
It’s difficult to raise a child these days.
There’s the sliding culture to deal with, of course, and the loss of a unified Christian ethos, of a government attempting to force us to violate our conscience on numerous levels.
There are the practical demands of parenting, many of which seem more acute these days. Our neighborhoods don’t feel as safe or secure as they did when we were kids. At the age of six, I was riding my bike everywhere without a care in the world, but today, we’re reluctant to let our boys and girls peddle beyond our block.
And there are so many things to teach our children these days, from being careful on the Internet to making wise choices in music and television. Back in my day, watching too much TV may have turned minds mushy, but an overdose of Gilligan’s Island didn’t compromise morals like much of the fare threatens to do to kids today.
So there are a lot of new things to teach our children. Important things. Critical things. But I would urge every parent to teach their children one more thing this weekend and emphasize it all the year through:
Teach them about the meaning behind Memorial Day.
Teach them about the men and women who died so that all of us could live in freedom.
Teach them that what we have in America is rare, an all-volunteer military who willingly risks everything on our behalf.
Teach them that Memorial Day is more than the traditional start of summer. It’s a day to remember that over one million Americans have died in wars on behalf of those in this nation. These numbers are astounding, but even more sobering is the reality that behind every number is a name, and an entire world that was changed when that soldier didn’t come home.
This coming weekend the Dalys will be remembering and giving thanks to God for the men and who fought and died so that we might live and be free.