4 years, 9 months ago
Our friend Mike at Cop the Truth is the most faithful follower of losses of airborne troopers of any person on the Internet. The Captain’s Journal has tried to be the same for Marines. Not openly, mind you, but silently and discretely. Beginning in 2005 and going through the present, whenever a Marine was killed in the Anbar Province in Iraq (and now beginning in Afghanistan), I have tried to make it a point to read the account, his family’s reaction, and the official press release – and then pray for his family.
The years in Anbar were very hard, and with fully one quarter of the more than 4000 deaths coming from Marine fatalities in the Anbar Province alone (for losses of more than 1000 Marines due to combat action), the last several years have been hard. The year 2006 and the followup year of 2007 (when my son was deployed) were especially dark.
One commendable thing about posting to blogs and opinion sites is that while I attempt to keep the writing tilted towards good analysis and commentary (even if containing advocacy), occasionally I give myself the freedom to engage in dissemination of deeply personal views. And it’s okay to do that.
If you are one of those sad souls who believes that when a person dies his body cools to ambient temperature and then that’s the end, then I don’t have much for you. You may take Memorial Day and ponder the sacrifice of those who died too young for this great nation of ours. This all seems rather empty to me. But if you are like me, a believer in orthodox Christianity, I encourage you to say a prayer of thanks to God for our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines who keep us safe, past, present and future. Another way of saying it is that while those warriors have bravely died on the field of battle, they aren’t now dead.
Those who have gone before us are in God’s hands. While certainly unorthodox, I recommend that the focus of your prayers and giving this Memorial Day be the families of American warriors who have given their all, along with those warriors who have disabilities from their combat. Pray that the Lord would assuage the pain of their losses, whether limbs lost, brain function lost, or sons or daughters lost on the field of battle. I am not suggesting that you convert this Memorial Day into Veteran’s Day. I am suggesting that you remember those who still suffer on behalf of our deceased warriors. Our deceased warriors no longer suffer.
This Memorial Day, do more than ponder silently, which is therapeutic for no one except you. Intercede on behalf of grieving families for God to bless them today and throughout the year. Have a great Memorial Day 2009.