One Nation Under God

One Nation Under God 

By Rev. John Brennan

  • This day has been established as a national day of honor and recognition for the men and women who have served this country in its armed forces.  Your nation is rightly thankful for, and certainly proud of you, her Veterans.
  • For my own part, I personally would like to thank and honor you as well.  You see, unlike you veterans, I have not served in the armed forces; I have not had to sacrifice my time or talent for the welfare and safety of others.
  • When there is a need for someone to stand in the gap, between good and evil – you were there, in my place.  You were there where I might have been, where perhaps I should have been – but I wasn’t.  You served for me.
  • You left your homes and your loved ones – I took mine for granted.  You marched and drilled and pushed your body to its limit and beyond – while I abused mine.
  • You toiled and trained and sweated and suffered – while I whined and complained about everything.  You sacrificed your minutes and hours and days, even your lives – while I wasted mine.
  • You gave up families and friends, homes and schools, careers and futures.  Some of you saw and experienced the horrors and atrocities of war.  Maybe you were wounded or lost close friends in combat.  I didn’t even care.
  • Many of you even put yourself in harm’s way, literally putting your very life on the line, for people who didn’t know you, for people who didn’t care in the least about you or your sacrificial service for America.  People like me.
  • The armed forces were out of sight and therefore out of mind – simply out there somewhere standing in gap as watchmen on the wall – so I could rest easy at night.  To me you were nameless, faceless and insignificant.
  • I was young and oh so stupid when I thought that way.  It never occurred to me that my life of leisure and ease was provided at the expense of others whose lives were nothing like easy.  It never occurred to me that my life of ungrateful self-indulgence came at a high price – paid by you veterans.
  • For all your sacrifice and your service, I cannot begin to thank you properly.  For the loss and pain and separation that you suffered in my place and on my behalf – I feel for you now, and I am sorry.
  • For me and for those like me, who have neither served this great nation as you have, nor have we honored you as you deserve – I ask for your forgiveness and want you to know that you are the salt and light of this land.
  • Dear heroic veterans, I want you to know that there is One who sympathizes with your plight as ones abused and neglected, forgotten and rejected.  That is our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
  • [Romans 5:8] , , ,God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.  Jesus is a Savior who knows well what it is like to be taken for granted.
  • He knows what it is like to have His sacrifice be almost an afterthought of history.  He knows what it is like to be forgotten until some new crisis arises and threatens our way of life.
  • In the same way that in my ignorance and in my youth, I cared little for what you veterans were doing for me and the entire nation – haven’t we all treated Jesus and His atoning sacrifice on the cross the exact same way?
  • Wasn’t He separated from His family for our sake?  Wasn’t His body beaten and hung on a tree for you and me?  Wasn’t Jesus standing in the gap between heaven and hell (good and evil) just for us?
  • You veterans served and sacrificed for the love of your friends and for the love you your families and for the love of your country.  Jesus did the same for you and for me - because He loves us.
  • And in the same way the sorry likes of me and my ilk will never even begin to be able to pay the debt we owe you veterans – so too we who believe in Jesus as our savior will never be able to repay Him.
  • All we can do is recognize and honor Him as the Lord and savior that He is.  Just as we recognize and honor you veterans as patriots and heroes you are.
  • We thank God for you who have served this great land in its Armed Forces.  May God Bless you for your sacrifice and your service.
  • May God continue to Bless America, for the sake of its noble veterans, and for the sake of His son, in whose name we pray.
  • Amen