Saturday, November 11, 2006

Veterans Day & Life Change

Today is Veteran’s Day and I join the chorus of American voices that say a heart felt “thank you” to those who have served our country, risked and/or lost life, in order to protect our freedom.

A fascinating story by Lisa Hoffman appeared this past week that focused on the remaining veterans of WWI. There appears to be only about a dozen surviving veterans with an average age of 108!

Hoffman invites us to reflect. Many of these vets were born under an American flag with only 45 stars and have witnessed three centuries. They have seen 19 presidents and 7 wars. Their lives began before airplanes, radio, talking movies and antibiotics. Animals were a more common mode of transportation than tin lizzies.

One person commented, “They’re the only generation that has gone from outhouses to outer space.”

Again, I honor and admire the sacrifice and commitment of these “Doughboys” and all the vets that have fought for our country.

I don’t want to take anything away from a Veteran’s Day focus. However, I would like to take it a step farther. Hoffman’s observation of all the lifestyle change WWI vets have seen made my mind spin.

I have also been privileged to see a tremendous amount of life change. Not because I’m so old (grin) but because I’m involved in a dynamic Christian church. Through the years I’ve seen people walk into the community of faith with brokenness, confusion, fear and despair. I’ve seen them touched by God and embraced by people, inspired by scripture and forgiven of many sins. I’ve seen healing, wholeness, hope, direction and purpose flood and fill lives so that they look as different today as 2006 looks different from 1906.
Yes, I know that there are broken churches that have hurt people and caused far-reaching problems. If you or someone you love has suffered from a dysfunctional church I sincerely apologize. At the same time, the best churches are still filled with sinful people and there is no perfect church. That being said, just as America, with all of our problems, is worth defending, the church, with all of her problems, is worth giving a second or third chance. I’m praying for you, my blog reading friend, to meaningfully engage God in His church.

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