Reading through the Bible continues on this national holiday. I squeezed in a little sewing, too. Quilt of Valor blocks are collected at our County Fair, so I’m one seam away from completing one:
I just finished the book of Nehemiah. He was a governor over the land of Judea, which was under Persian rule. The benevolent Persian leader believed in giving his extended kingdom more local control. So Nehemiah was his man in Judea. Having the freedom to do so, Nehemiah took it upon himself to rebuild the wall around Jerusalem. It was in need of a wall in order to protect the temple which was newly restored under the leadership of Ezra.
What struck me was the fact that he did so at great personal sacrifice. As a governor, he could have indulged in an easy life of advantage and privilege. Instead, he chose to take on an unpopular task which caused career suicide. He didn’t accept any of the governmental resources that would make him personally prosperous. He worked tirelessly and suffered many enemies. Against all odds, the job got done and the rest, as they say, is history.
It’s Memorial Day today. We remember not only loved ones who have passed on, but also all military personnel who have served with their lives on our behalf. It’s a solemn day, even though we spend it eating hot dogs and waving our flags at our barbecues.
I was thinking; you won’t make it into any history book without having made a great personal sacrifice of some sort. Remember the email that went around years ago about the personal plights of the signers of the Constitution? And besides John, we remember that all the disciples died martyr’s deaths.
Service men and women have all made personal sacrifices to our country, but they won’t be found in the history books. They probably don’t want to be, because humility seems to come with the heroism. I’d like to thank them here, and tell them that on this Memorial Day, we remember.