A Selfless Tribute
As Memorial Day approaches, I find myself longing to be back home, visiting the local cemetery, and paying tribute to those loved ones who died in the line of duty. For years, my mother celebrated Memorial Day by purchasing a fresh floral arrangement of beautiful red, white and blue flowers for the church piano. The attached card read, “In memory of those who bravely died in service to our country.” After church, Mom took the flowers and divided them into two bouquets, taking one to (her first husband) Raymond Kelley’s small memorial in Fayette, Indiana, and the second bouquet to the grave of my father, Marvin Cavin, in Lebanon’s Oak Hill Cemetery. Both men fought in World War II. My father returned home
. . . Raymond did not.
When I interviewed my mother about her life during the 1940’s for When You
Come Home, I got a first-hand look at the cost of war and the heartache that ensued when a loved one headed off to train for a war in a far-off place. Young and carefree, Raymond Kelley left home one chilly November day in 1942- proud, scared, yet determined to serve his country . . . not realizing the price that he would pay. Less than a year later, his widow was left alone to grieve and to continue on in a country still obsessed with talk of war. It seemed impossible to escape the jarring headlines of the local newspapers, the constant updates
blaring from department store radios, or the snatches of war chatter floating around the local eateries.
The years went by and my mother remarried and moved on, but she never stopped loving and honoring her soldier. This Memorial Day, let’s make sure we never forget and always honor our soldiers; remember and appreciate the selfless and courageous people who valiantly served and died to keep our country free. Our gratitude should be never-ending.
A camel is sure-footed and can see in the dark, I kept telling myself. Our caravan navigated up a rocky path that wound its way along the edge of Mt. Sinai. We hoped to reach the summit by sunrise.
My husband, riding the camel behind me, yelled, "Don't look down!" Thankfully, I didn't. Instead I looked up.
The expansive, star-filled sky glimmered like buckets of rhinestones poured across black velvet. I finally relaxed and swayed to the stepping rhythm of an enormous beast. As we continued to climb, one of our Arab guides broke into song, his voice deep and mellow.
A peace filled my heart and I worshipped my Lord, the Creator of the Universe.
Think of a time when you were assured of God's presence.
It can happen, you know, when you are doing the most ordinary things, washing dishes, mowing the yard, doing another load of laundry, or riding a camel. Stay alert and don't miss Him.
"It is in the everyday things of life that we realize the magnificent deity of Jesus Christ."
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This is a new adventure for me.
If it is for you also, perhaps we can learn together.
Don’t hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all. NIV
One summer, on switchback mountain roads, we rode in the back of a pickup on our way to Bible school. We, my sister and I and our mining camp friends, belted out “This little light of mine.” We may have been lacking in talent, but not in volume or enthusiasm.
“This little light of mine; I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine. Let it shine. Put it under a basket. No! I’m gonna let it shine.”
Many years later my husband and I attended a Christmas program at The Cove, near Asheville. Billy Graham, Cliff Barrows, and George Beverly Shea gave an impromptu performance of . . .You guessed it. This Little Light of Mine. Two out of the three had obvious talent. Billy Graham’s part was to shout “NO!” when the time came. These three dear men brought back a sweet memory.
Questions to think about:
Am I letting my light shine today?
Who has shone a light on your path?
Share your thoughts.
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