Military service is sacrificial service. There are sacrifices of time, comfort, and safety. There are so many sacrifices of time and events missed away from family: holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, births, deaths, marriages – virtually any life event is subject to sacrifice when the military mission takes precedence over what would normally be the most important events of one’s lifetime. There are times of duty in the middle of the night, on weekends, and there are long weeks and months away at military training or deployments. But as important as these times with family are, the sacrifice of those times is made for a higher calling, something more important – the greater good of our American Republic, our fellow countrymen country, and our American way of life, complete with the higher values of equality of all people, etc. This is why I believe that God must love soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines. Those that sacrifice all for the greater good most certainly walk in the footsteps of our Savior who gave all.
Of course, we are only making a small imitation of the tremendous sacrifice of our Savior. In the military service we make many sacrifices for people we will never even meet. But our Lord and Savior, as God, knew who he was making His sacrifice for. He described His sacrifice in John 15:13: “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.” Of course, Jesus went one better than that with His sacrifice. In our ignorance before God’s Holy Spirit enlightens us to our sin, before our salvation and before our enlightenment, we are essentially enemies of God, living in sin against His will. So the sacrifice that Jesus made was not just for His friends, those of us who are already saved and walk in fellowship with Him daily, but He was also sacrificing for His enemies, desiring that those people would turn to Him one day and be saved.
I pray that you would rejoice in the sacrifice that Jesus made for us on the cross and that you would find a way to walk in sacrificial love to those around you so that they would come to know our Glorious Savior personally as well.