Sunday, May 24, 2009

Every Day a Memorial

Tomorrow our nation will honor the many U.S. service men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure our freedom. Jesus said it himself, "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." When I think of how many have willingly given their lives for our country, I feel a strong sense of pride and gratitude. I'm sure you do too.

It is right that we should remember those who died in service to us. However, most of us have never experienced that sacrifice first hand. Imagine if you had someone personally use their body as a shield to protect you from a grenade. Would you limit your memorial to one day a year? No, not a day would go by that you wouldn't think about that person and what they did for you.

In much the same way, we can sometimes think of Christ's sacrifice as being made for the sins of the world. Much like the nameless soldier who died on foreign soil, we are grateful, but it feels as if He died for a cause. All those preachers and songs that say Jesus was thinking of me as he hung on the cross must be wrong. There's no way Jesus was specifically concerned with me, right?

Romans 8 says, "For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified." We're not talking Calvinism here necessarily, but this passage speaks to the fact that God has a plan. Yes, Jesus died for the sins of the world, but in accordance with God's design, Jesus died for individuals. Individuals whom God "foreknew." What that means is up for debate, but what isn't up for debate is that Jesus died for you personally. A sacrifice like that is worthy of a lifetime of remembrance.

Don't let a day go by without thanking God for allowing His Son to die on a battlefield the day He laid His life down for you. Let's make every day a Memorial Day honoring that ultimate sacrifice.