The Ponder Effect | How can we honor the fallen?
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How can we honor the fallen?

When I think of Memorial Day, I think of Doritos and wet bathing suits, the crack of beer cans and grill smoke. It’s all great American fun, and it comes at a cost. Only we don’t much see it. We see the hell in the world, sure. The media feasts on the bad things that happen like a steady march of ants. But we, as individuals, families, and communities, in this time are, for the most part, far far removed from the ravages of the wars that have claimed the lives of our heroes. The great bulk of us have never had rations or soldiers at our door or a spouse or parent with PTSD. Those who have, know. They know that lemonade and pick-up basketball and fountains to play and porches to sit on and the freedom to walk down the street are not free.

We take things for granted. That’s what we do. And we despair over littler things in the absence of large-scale suffering. That’s what we do, too. But this week, we are called on not only to saturate ourselves with the great fun of summer but to remember. It is demanded of us that we honor the fallen. How?

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3 Ponderings
  • Anonymous

    May 27, 2018 at 8:36 pm

    By living every day as good citizens. Understanding our republic and guarding it and our freedoms and teaching the next generation to do the same. Teaching them our history—the good, the noble, the bad, the ugly, and the heroic—and never letting the sacrifice be forgotten.

  • Anonymous

    May 28, 2018 at 2:09 pm

    Yesterday I went to a small church in a small town. As part of the service a memorial was read complete with drum roll and bugle. All veterans were asked to stand and two flags were brought in by elementary school
    children. We all sang and sang out America The Beautuful. The service concluded with a medley of military music. I promised myself I would not cry but of course tears rolled and rolled down my cheeks.
    The same thing happened to me at the ceremony today. A parade of veterans, remberances at a cemetery, a wreath placed in the lake to honor those lost at sea, a 21 gun salute, a full band playing military anthems and a reading of the names of the men and women from this small community who lost their lives for all of us gathered there.
    We can remember. We can honor. We can weep. We can teach our children our history and to understand that the freedoms that we rarely think about are costly. We can support the organizations that help the men and women who have come home to us with physical, mental and spiritual wounds to be able to live fully and whole in our wonderful America.
    God bless America. God bless the men and women in our current Armed Forces and those in the past.

  • Anonymous

    May 29, 2018 at 5:47 pm

    We can pray and share their story. We can follow their lead. We can remember. those are the ways I remember my dog that past away around my birthday and they are also the ways I remember my dear grandmother, gram and my dog Willie.