On this Memorial Day, many Americans will place on their grille a hot dog, or a burger, and as they listen to the hiss of the steak or corn on the cob charring just right, they will not recall the sacrifices of those who gave their lives as they frolic around the glowing embers of those hot coals. They will not understand that the families of these heros often sacrifice just as much in their absence or death. Which is what I was reminded of recently when I saw on the bicep of one man a tattoo that read: “Some gave all, but all gave some.”
Desmond Doss was one of those guys who gave all. Infantry men who once ridiculed and scoffed at Desmond’s simple faith and refusal to carry a weapon in war owed their lives to him [click triangular play button below to see why]. He died on March 23, 2006. But his bravery is legendary and his story is still being told. Today, there are numerous Christians in the military. Some carry a gun. Others, like Desmond Doss choose not to. But both decisions take incredible courage. If you or someone in your family has served or is serving in any capacity their convictions allow, would you thank them today?
And remember that: “Love without courage and wisdom is sentimentality, as with the ordinary church member. Courage without love and wisdom is foolhardiness, as with the ordinary soldier. Wisdom without love and courage is cowardice, as with the ordinary intellectual. But the one who has love, courage, and wisdom moves the world”—Ammon Hennacy [Catholic activist, 1893 - 1970].