I’m so grateful for all the men and women who have made sacrifices for our country! In particular I remember a dear friend, Peter Cross, who died serving in Afghanistan. He gave up his life for a group of Afghan kids, and he’ll always be remembered for selfless service.
On Sunday one of our pastors shared how he spent months away from his pregnant wife while serving in the Navy. He shared how he was only able to return for a short time to attend his son’s birth before returning to serve in the Navy!
These brave men and women give up their rights, time, family, friends, and even lives for their country and for our freedom. What a tremendous sacrifice!
This same pastor went on to preach from 2 Timothy 1. The apostle Paul was put in prison for preaching the Gospel, and was most likely executed by Emperor Nero soon after he wrote 2 Timothy. Paul gave his time, relationships (he didn’t get married), comforts (being shipwrecked, persecuted, etc), and ultimately his life. But why? The Apostle Paul understood that sharing the gospel was not only a worthy cause but the most worthy cause. He wanted Gentiles and Jews to understand that Christ died for them so that they can be free from the power of sin and death and made alive in Christ Jesus!
On Memorial Day and Remembrance Day and all throughout the year, we should remember and honour the soldiers who gave it all for our freedom. The fact that we recognize the worthiness of sacrifices for our earthly country should lead us all the more to recognize the worthiness of sacrifices for our eternal country! Just as there are people in cruel bondage to human forces, there are untold billions who are in bondage to a demonic forces, and the consequences of that bondage are eternal! Having not placed their trust in Christ as their Saviour their eternal destination is hell.
Christ says we should expect persecution. That we should put the name and cause of Christ before our parents, spouses, family, and lives. The need to re-state this is apparent in our Western culture because of the entitlement mentality. The feelings I often find myself having can even range to entitlement towards the gospel! Do you also feel the weight of the lost? Or have you fallen into the snare of entitlement that says that our lives, comfort, and relationships have more value than obedience to proclaim the Gospel to the uttermost: to those who don’t have a chance to hear it unless someone goes to tell them.
“Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us…” 2 Timothy 1:8-9a