Memorial Day 2018
Memorial Day is here again. For those outside of the United States, Memorial Day is a special day dedicated to the memory of the brave men and women of the United States Military who have fought and died serving their country. These brave servicemen and women laid down their lives so that the rest of us may continue to enjoy our freedom and rights. Every year on the last Monday in May, we pause and reflect as a country so that their sacrifice is never forgotten.
As I reflected on the history of Memorial Day, I started thinking about what service means. The dictionary defines service as “the action of helping or doing work for someone.” We often think about how the servicemen and women that we remember on this day gave their lives, but I think it’s important to remember that they gave so much more than that. Many members of the United States Military start their service at age 18. The military determines where they live, where they work, and where and when they have to serve. They gave up their futures—who they might have become; the children they might have had. They set aside their personal desires for the good of our nation. What greater sacrifice is there? It’s pretty incredible when you think about how much these people dedicate to the service of others.
I’m so grateful to these men and women and to the sacrifice they made to keep America safe and free for all people. They served with their lives, and because of their selfless acts this country remains free in all forms— free for the citizens of the United States to live their best lives, and for those living outside of the United States, the freedom to come to America and work towards a better life.
The men and women we remember on Memorial Day have bravely sacrificed everything for service of others. And I started to think—How can we show our appreciation for our service men and women? Is there a way to that our actions and deeds can help to support people like brave American service people, and ultimately serve the greater good for liberty and freedom for all?
Last week I had the honor of being part of the National Police Week Recognition Ceremony in Philadelphia. Held at In The Light Ministries in Philadelphia, PA and headed by police Reverend Luis Centeno 250 law enforcement officers gathered together in celebration of the service they provide to the people of Philadelphia every day. This ceremony was awesome— between the table settings, decorations, and the entertainment featuring a pair of fire eating clowns, many people from the church came together to put together a nice meal and evening for the officers and their families. My company, Parts Life, Inc., has sponsored this dinner since it’s inception, and as a result I was invited this year to give a short speech as a way to share fellowship with these officers. After my speech was finished, I thought a lot about how these officers so selflessly served not only their communities but a greater good to keep the city of Philadelphia safe. And as I looked around, I saw all of these members of the church volunteering and working hard for these men and women and make sure both them and their families had a great evening where they felt appreciated. Inspired by all these people working together so selflessly for the benefit of the police officers, I was compelled to jump in and help clear the officer’s plates.
The service I provided these police officers was very small and easy, especially when compared to what the brave men and women of the police force and the military sacrifice and potentially lose every single day. But I know that for a moment these police officers, however briefly or subconsciously, felt supported and appreciated in their roles. My actions, however insignificant to me, helped service them and support that greater good for all that they were bravely fighting for.
This Memorial Day I challenge you to think about how to show your appreciation for those around you who sacrifice so much in the service of others. How can your daily actions, however small or large, support and service the people around you? How can you serve others with your actions and attitude? In Ephesians 6:7, the bible says, “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people.” God tells us to act towards others as if we were acting towards God himself. That however we chose to serve others or even ourselves, we do it with the same loving heart and service as our Lord Jesus Christ.