It’s a big number. But on today of all days, that number takes on even greater value and significance.
That’s because today is Memorial Day, the day we remember over one million Americans who have died in war on behalf of us all.
That figure is astounding by itself, but it’s even more sobering when you reflect on this: behind every number is a name, and behind every name is a family whose entire world changed forever because that soldier didn’t come home. Every number represents the loss of a husband, a son, a brother, or a wife, a daughter, a sister. Factor in those intangibles, and the sense of loss is almost too staggering to comprehend.
That’s why it’s so important for us to teach our children – and to remember ourselves – what Memorial Day really means. It’s about honoring the memory of men and women who gave up their lives, so we all could carry on with ours in freedom. We can’t let all of that get cheapened into nothing more than an extra day off of work, a fun day at the lake, or hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill.
So this Memorial Day, as we think of the liberties we’re so blessed to enjoy, let’s ask God to protect our soldiers who stand in harm’s way and to comfort the families who long for their safe return.
But let’s also reflect on those one million men and women and the sacrifice they made. As has been said, “Freedom isn’t free.” It was bought with the blood of our soldiers who deserve our gratitude and solemn remembrance.
In honor of all of those who have died in service and of the families they left behind, on our program today we’re airing a montage of listeners who called in and shared the names and stories of a special serviceman or woman in their lives that they’ve known, loved, and been forced to say goodbye to.
They deserve to be honored – and remembered.
We’ll also air a portion of a conversation I had with speaker and Vietnam veteran Dave Roever, who shares a touching account of holding a soldier in his arms as he breathed his last breath.
I hope you’ll join us today for this very special edition of our Focus on the Family broadcast. When we’re through, I hope your appreciation for freedom will seem deeper and richer, and you’ll feel in your heart the memory of a serviceman or woman you’ve had to say goodbye to.