Bless Your Heart by Cindy Colley

Can’t Wait To Be A Veteran

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As I write this, it’s Veteran’s Day. That means my husband is going to work in his scrungy clothes, because he’s really supposed to be off and no one else will be there. It means there’s a traffic jam in town today because of the parade. And it means there’s a thirty percent off sale at the thrift store. But it means, too, that we pause to think about the great sacrifices made by many men and women who have served in our armed forces. My young nephews are amazed when they hear the accounts about a man named Hitler, about Pearl Harbor, and even about those towers crashing on September 11, 2001. We should never stop telling them. Some of the information we give them will never be transmitted in their classrooms at school because of historic revisionism in attempts to be politically correct.

Some vets are full of actual combat stories. They are men of bravery and our children should know them…especially those aged Christian men of wisdom who fought in World War Two. Some veterans never saw combat. But they were on the boats, in the offices, in training camps, in planes, and in submarines, nonetheless. They were preparing equipment, transporting soldiers, strategizing and enabling others. They were missing their families, writing their girlfriends, wishing for Mom’s cooking and worrying about their kids.

Sometimes when I am with my dad, who is a simple man… a Navy Veteran of WWII, I realize that the simplest statements are really fairly profound and that he knows a lot of these profound truths that he talks about in such plain terms. He’s eighty-eight years old. When I think about the fact that he watched technology change His world from that of the son of a sharecropper, picking cotton by hand on the farm that was, at last, their own– to the dad sitting with me at his dining room table looking at computer images that I want to show him—images that took no film or darkroom and can be transmitted around the world in a second—well, he must have a soundtrack to his life’s video that includes some pretty big gasps of amazement. And somewhere in between the cotton field and the computer, he got on a transport boat in a war and traveled the world. Everybody who has gone from this point A to point B, has got to have some observations about life that are worth sharing.

So I was exiting the hospital in his hometown with him the other day and this little boy that was way beyond cute, got in our pathway. I patted him on the head and picked at him a bit as we walked by. Dad said, “Do you know who the best and most upright people in the world are?…The best people anywhere in the world are little children. They are not ever mean. They have no guile. They are innocent and they love everybody alike. Children are my heroes.”

Sometimes the obvious profundities like this need to be put into words. Jesus said this in Matthew 18:3,4:

Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.

I know this is oversimplification, but isn’t it true that if everybody personally applied this one weighty principle about conversion to humility, that there would be no more wars? It’s great to live in a country and an era in which we can honor those who have fought for our freedom. But I am really looking forward to living in a world where there will be no more wars and we will all be veterans of (that means finished with and having come home from) the battle against principalities and powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12). We will all be veterans in heaven. I can’t wait to lay my armor down.
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