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May God bless our military, past and present

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This is Memorial Day weekend, 2014, and many events are scheduled to commemorate those who have given their service and their lives in service to our country. Many people do not realize what it means to have military family members. Being a military family member brings a huge sense of patriotic pride, but it also brings many other emotions. Families are separated, depending on where the soldier is stationed. Deployment is a time of hope and great fear. When a soldier comes home is a time like no other--indescribable.

The United States has always had great military power and strength in numbers. Through the Civil War, World War I, World War II, the Viet Nam War, the war in Korea, and the war with Afghanistan and Iraq, soldiers have gone off to battle. Some return home. Others do not. Some are wounded physically. Others are scarred with mental anguish. Many soldiers have wounds that affect their everyday lives, those that are hard to manage, slow to heal, and make each day a struggle. They fight onward. The war that they fought in may be over, but their personal wars continue on with them.

Some of these soldiers are still active, still pursuing the goals set before them. They still fight for our country, doing their duty each day as required by the individual branches of the military. Others have left the military, and are now considered civilians in everyday life. Some have passed on. To all of our veterans, past and present, we owe a great deal of thanks. It is because of their service to our country that we possess the freedoms that exist today.

For all of our military, and their families, this quote is offered, "God is the One who provides our strength, not only to cope with the demands of the day, but also to rise above them. May we look to Him for the strength to soar," (Jim Gallery--as cited in America kneels to pray, 2003, Nashville, TN: Elm Hill Books).

May God bless our military, those in every branch of service. May they be blessed with strength, wisdom, and the grace to deal with whatever may face them now and in the future. May their physical and mental scars be healed. May God hold them in the palm of His hand, protecting them now and always.

Take time to thank a soldier for his service, shake hands with a veteran, offer a helping hand to a family whose soldier is deployed.

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