Freedom Is Not Free

Chaplain Cecelia A. Walker
Princeton Baptist Medical Center

“There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”  (John 15:13 NRSV)

On November 11, 1919 President Woodrow Wilson proclaiming the first Armistice Day said: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations."

This Tuesday, we will continue the tradition of honoring America’s Veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to sacrificially serve for the common good. Veterans Day is a special day set aside for special citizens. It gives civilians an opportunity to collectively pause to appreciate, affirm and acknowledge men and women who have risked the most sacred gift we have - life - in order to defend and protect the lives of others.

While we have the benefit of infinite freedoms in our wonderful country, I think we should acknowledge at least three things.

1. Freedom comes at great cost. As mentioned earlier, men and women have risked the most sacred, God-given gift they have to defend and protect the lives of others. Many have given the ultimate sacrifice in their service.

2. Our freedom is not a blank check to infringe upon the freedoms of others. Freedom is not a license to do whatever we want.

3. Freedom comes with responsibilities. The Bible teaches us that “to whom much is given, much is required”. We have responsibilities to positively enhance the society in which we live.

The Pastoral Care Department of The Baptist Health System salutes all Veterans. We are eternally grateful for your service.

Prayer:  Dear God we thank You for the freedom that we experience in our country. We thank you for each person who has served to make our country what it has been, what it is and what it will become. We especially thank You for the freedom we have because of Jesus. His sacrifice assures us that it is well with our souls in this life and in the life to come. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

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