“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, Because the LORD has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners;” Isaiah 61:1 NAS
As we prepare to celebrate Memorial Day it is important to remember what this day is all about. For many people it marks the beginning of summer and is a chance to gather with family and friends and enjoy a long weekend. It is important to remember that Memorial Day was set aside to remember those who have died serving in our military; those who were willing to lay down their lives so others could experience liberty. The sacrifices of men and women who not only served our country, but were willing to run to the frontlines of war to bring relief and freedom to the afflicted and captives in areas occupied and oppressed.
There is a special commitment that runs through the members of the military, a fierce sense of duty and service to their country and the people they defend. They are fearfully and wonderfully made to be courageous enough to fight yet humble enough to obey the chain of command.They often sacrifice so many things that others would never give up; being present at the birth of their child, birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, graduations, sports, and concerts and many other day-in and day-out significant events the rest of us get to treasure in our hearts, and at best, they get to see it in pictures. They often must work harder to hold their family together from afar while focusing on the mission at hand, while possibly still dealing emotionally with the ones in the past. Some realize that it is a spiritual calling, a Kingdom appointment to defend people who cannot fight for themselves, and they are sent in to be the answer to someone’s prayers. It is for these reasons and so many more, that we, the National Day of Prayer task Force, are committed to praying fervently for our military, their families and remembering those who died to keep liberty alive.
While we are deeply grateful for our earthly liberty, of course our thoughts and hearts also turn to Jesus, who laid down His life so that we could have eternal liberty. The enemy may steal your earthly liberty, but he cannot touch the eternal liberty of a follower of Jesus. Jesus brought good news, healing, liberty, and freedom that no enemy can destroy. The freedoms we experience on earth and eternally are a treasured gift we have not earned. They were bought by the life of another. This weekend, please take some time to ponder what liberty means to you, knowing America is not perfect, but that as followers of Jesus Christ we are being perfected by a perfect God. Count your blessings and let gratefulness wash over you. Then take some time to thank God and pray for our military.
Let’s kick off this weekend by praying together.
Lord, we praise You as the designer and definer of love, life and liberty. You are our Creator and Redeemer, our Defender! Our blessings are too many to count but I pause to take time right now to remember and thank you for (name some of your blessings). Thank you for our military members; warriors who could work in many other places with more freedom over their lives but who choose to serve and stand for liberty. Please pour out Your blessings upon them, protect them, and preserve their families. Lord, please wrap Your comforting arms around the families of those who have suffered the ultimate loss while their loved one fought for country and liberty. May we never forget, and never fail to be grateful.
Serving Him with gladness,
President, National Day of Prayer Task Force