Holidays when I was growing up, were no big deal really, outside of Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter.  The other ones, Labor Day, Memorial Day, etc., were just another day… maybe a day off from school and more time to play.  Today, people celebrate with picnics and family get-togethers, parades and all that.  I have come to realize the importance of Memorial Day and why we honor those who died for our great country.

I have always considered myself very patriotic and love nothing more than seeing a group of soldiers and an opportunity to wish them well.  The fact that they were willing to give up their regular ways of life and serve our country means a lot.  Their families as well deserve our support and gratitude.

Recently, I have been helping my grand daughter with home school on the subject of World History.  (A study we all could use). The object of every country was to increase their power and to spread their form of government into other parts of the world…which is still going on today.  The ones that spread the fastest seemed to be Socialism and Communism.  The original concept of Communism was changed to even more extreme, as it spread into the Soviet Union… and their way of spreading it was through military force.  Once many more people experienced the freedoms of democracy, it began to take hold, and eventually, America became the land of promise and opportunity.

I also recently learned more about Memorial Day, and different ways it is observed.  The flag is to be flown at half- mast until noon, then raised again to show that America still stands… and in honor of all those who gave their lives in service to our country.  It also is a day to remember every person who has passed away, so many people visit the cemeteries.  Some place coins on the headstones of those who served in the military.  A red poppy is worn by many and flags are placed on soldiers’ graves.  A National Observance takes place at 3:00 pm and everyone is encouraged to observe a moment of silence to honor our fallen.  Some ring church bells at this time and train whistles blow.

My dad and my oldest brother both served in the Army; daddy in World War 1 and my brother in Korea.  Neither of them ever spoke too much about their time in the military, but we were thankful that both returned home.  Daddy was 22 years old when he was drafted and was 35 when he and my mom met and were married.  My brother was married and expecting his first child when his draft notice came.  My nephew, his son, was 22 months old before he met his daddy. Today my brother is 85 years old and my dad, if he were still alive, would be 126 years old.  Several other family members have and are serving our country now.  So today, Memorial Day is a big deal and needs to be observed in some way.

The Lord has blessed our country beyond measure and it is because of Him that we enjoy our freedoms to speak, worship and move about freely.  Covid 19 slowed down our progress in many areas and took some of those freedoms away for a time, but as we begin to get back to life as we knew it before 2020, we must be careful to protect these freedoms and pay attention when laws are passed that infringe on them.  We can’t blame the government if we are the ones who put them in power.  This Memorial Day, let’s pray for wisdom and direction for ourselves and our country.  May we always be able to say: “I’m proud to be an American,” and stand proud of those who gave their lives that we might remain free.  May God continue to bless the U.S.A!

John 15: 13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

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My name is Betty Fritz. I was born and raised in Texas but have resided in Elkhart, Indiana for the last 25 years. My husband is a Hoosier so that’s how we wound up here. We have two daughters and a son plus 6 grand kids…..3 boys and 3 girls. I retired last year after working for 24 years at Elkhart Child Development Center. I’ve been writing since a teenager and have taken several writing courses. I enjoy writing short stories. I wrote a book of poems, RHYMES OF THE TIMES, which was published a few years ago. I have written countless songs, a few for which demo recordings have been made. Recently I’ve been writing blogs..most of them about my faith and things the Lord has taught me in my Christian life over the last 51 years. My inspiration comes from my personal relationship with Jesus Christ and my desire to see that my grandchildren grow up in a Christian nation. My goal is to bring glory to Him and help others to see that there is POWER in the name of JESUS!

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