What is the greatest thing you have ever given? Some give money, others give their time and you find the generous soul who is quick to volunteer their spouse. But there have been a few who, with one act, give everything. Memorial Day is a day when we remember those who gave a greater gift than most, and yet it still pales in comparison with the greatest gift that could be given. Read on to learn more about that gift.
Memorial Day in the U.S. began as "Decoration Day." It was celebrated after the Civil War with veterans of the Union Army decorating graves of their comrades who had fallen in battle. It spread through the North and the South, and eventually, it morphed into what it is today. It is different than Veteran's day, which is for recognizing all who have served in the military. Memorial day is for remembering those who gave the one thing that could not be replaced: one's life.
Today, we thank God for those who were willing to sacrifice their lives so the rest of us can live in freedom and peace. Freedom and peace do not happen on their own--they must be fought for and protected. There is a tremendous price to be paid.
Every life laid down in service of our country points to the greatest gift ever given. Jesus Christ set his freedom aside and his the peace that existed between Him and God, the Father. He was bound, beaten and butchered on a cross, that cruel instrument of crucifixion. He became your substitute. He had no sin, but God took your sin and laid in on Jesus. When this happened, that perfect Father-Son relationship was broken for the first time, and Jesus cried out to his Father, "Why have you forsaken me?"
Reflect on this, the greatest gift, today, as you remember the lives laid low for your freedom. Jesus died to set sinners free. He rose again, conquered death, and if you believe in Him, you will have forgiveness--freedom from sin--and peace with God.