Some people see Veteran’s Day as little more than a day when the bank is closed and the mail doesn’t run. For a couple reasons it means more to me than that. My Dad and my grandfather served in the armed forces. My Grandfather was stationed on Guam during WWII. Dad served in the Navy during the Korean conflict and as an Army chaplain in South Vietnam. My first Christian service assignment at Moody Bible Institute was to visit from room to room at V. A. Lakeside Hospital n Chicago. It always stirs patriotism in me when I get a WWII vet to tell me his or her story. When my children are my age they won’t be able to sit down and hear a first-hand account of WWII.
We have eight children and I want each of them to be patriots. That’s why we buy poppies to support disabled veterans. That’s why we teach them to stand and hold their hand over their heart when “Old Glory” passes. That’s why we fly the flag. That’s why we do more the picnic on Memorial Day. During the fore-noon on Memorial Day we fly the flag at half staff in honor of those who spilled their blood for the freedoms we enjoy every day. In the afternoon we take her to the top of the pole and let her proudly snap in the breeze and pray for the restoration of our great country.
We take them to their great grandfather’s grave and teach them that it is never free to live in a free country. We remind them of the privilege they have of growing up in small town America where murders, muggings, rapes and robberies haven’t forced the school news out of the local paper.
When it comes time to sing the National Anthem, we lean back and sing with all our hearts. We don’t mumble like we are embarrassed by it. We teach the children about some of our nations true heroes. Men and women of valor and honor who were motivated by a deep inner force of conviction not the cheap bribery of power, money or moral impurity. We remind them of the America my Grandfathers told me about, when patriotism was the norm and God was honored and people had a sense of common decency. When an infant was safe in the womb and marriage was for life and music was… well… musical.
We want our children to know the source of our beloved country’s greatness. It is a beautiful country but its greatness does not lie in its natural beauty. It is a prosperous country, but its greatness does not lie in its prosperity. It is a diverse country but its greatness does not lie in its diversity. America’s greatness and prosperity stems from its conformity to the Law of God and as we stray from our allegiance to Biblical law we compromise and jeopardize that greatness.
In other words we are trying to teach our children to pray for a revival of righteousness and a return to the faith of our fathers. And when we tuck them in bed at night we pray in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ that God will make true, selfless, noble, patriots of them.