I am naive to think I understand the meaning of the word sacrifice. It means “a giving up of something for something else”. I have often sacrificed my time, my money, and many a desire, but I have never risked my life for your rights or my own? I have never seen death on the battlefield nor the loss of a loved one serving our country, yet I reap the benefits on a daily basis.
Freedom is my norm and I take it for granted. I open my Bible without fear of persecution. I speak my mind with no concern for punishment. I do not fear living my life. No words can express the depth of our gratitude towards those who have risked their life or lost loved ones to protect our own, but I think it is important we try.
Here are 10 simple ways children and adults can show respect to those who have sacrificed to protect our freedom:
- Use your phone – If you know a veteran or family of a fallen soldier, call them and say thank you. Let them know you appreciate what they have done for you as an individual and for our country.
- Tweet! If you use the #wearegrateful hashtag, comments are screened, printed out on postcards, and distributed to troops worldwide.
- Fly a flag half-staff until noon. Memorial Day is a national day of mourning. Great way to show the United States of America some respect and pride.
- If you know somebody who is actively serving, write them a letter or send an email. Younger children can draw a picture of a flag.
- Attend a parade to pay tribute to those who have sacrificed their life. They are our heroes and should be treated as such.
- Make patriotic cookies for a service family. Many retirement facilities have large numbers of both veterans and widows living there.
- Pray for the families who have lost a child, spouse, or parents protecting our rights. The grieving doesn’t stop. The “National Moment of Remembrance” is at 3:00pm.
- If you own a business, give a discount to veterans.
- Visit a cemetery or grave of our fallen heroes. Leave flowers or a flag.
- If you live near a family of one who is serving, take your kids over and offer to do yard work, repaint a fence, or plant some flowers.
- Do something. We so often, don’t know what to do or say, the opportunity passes. Even fumbled words and messed up gifts show the gratitude of our hearts.
Have you endured the ultimate sacrifice of losing a loved one in service? I would love to read your story and honor them in the comment section below.
(picture below) In honor of my brother – and in memory of his friends who have lost their lives defending our country.
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13