Over the 200+ years of our country’s existence, men and women have been called upon to translate their love for America into service to America, fighting bad guys and giving their lives for our country and for all of us. On this Memorial Day 2013…if you’re one of those who’s served, who’s lost a family member, or who lives with a disability from that service, take this as a personal “thank you”.
We can all talk about loving our country, loving our church, loving our kids. But love that’s real is love that’s demonstrated. Love as a concept is just that… a concept. Just like peace. Synergy. Harmony. Euphoria. All concepts.
When a lover becomes a servant, love becomes real. Tangible. Palpable.
Jesus showed His love for His disciples. He taught them what He knew. He healed Peter’s mother-in-law. He gave them purpose. He gave them food sometimes. But His love was still pretty conceptual … until He took off His coat, got down on His knees and washed their feet. Just like they say “orphan” is just a word until you hold one, God’s love is pretty conceptual until someone personifies it through service. Jesus was the first and by far the most profound. Read what He says as he challenged His guys….
12 When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place. “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. 13 “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15 I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. 16 Very truly I tell you, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17 Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them. John 13
Service is an exchange…often a very one-sided exchange that’s totally unfair. Christ’s service for us….His ‘ultimate sacrifice’, giving His life in exchange for our freedom…that’s as one sided as it gets. Our soldiers have died for people they didn’t know. Jesus died for people who hadn’t yet been born. For people who hated Him. Even for the very people who killed Him.
The freedom we enjoy as Americans is unparalleled in human history. It’s unique. The freedom Jesus gives us while we walk on this earth is also unique. To live knowing we’re loved, forgiven, and secure…that’s ridiculously good!
Our personal and spiritual freedom ends when we stop breathing. But because of our Savior’s service to us…because of His ‘ultimate sacrifice’…our REAL freedom starts in that moment. In a new body, our lives will go on, free from evil, pain, illness and the need for sacrifice. We will ‘live with the saints forever’ and with Him.
On this day for expressing gratitude for ultimate sacrifice, remember to say thanks to our Heavenly Father for the most valuable sacrifice ever made.
Question: Will you take time today to thank the relative of someone who made the ‘ultimate sacrifice’ for our country? And will you thank our Father in heaven for the sacrifice He made in sending Jesus to that cross for you and for me? Share your thoughts here….
“You will be blessed if you do them”. Love serves. Love does.
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