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A time to remember

June 7, 2011
By PASTOR ROGER LEMKE, Fishers of Men Lutheran Church

Memory is a tricky thing. Particularly as we get older. You may know the story about three women who were talking. The first said: “Sometimes I go to the refrigerator and forget what I need by the time I get there.” The second woman said: “When I go upstairs, I can’t remember whether I’m going up for something or I’m on my way back down.” The third woman said: “I’m lucky, I don’t have those problems; knock on wood” (knocking on the table). “Oh, excuse me, there’s someone at the door.”

Memory is a tricky thing. Memory connects us to the past, the present and to the future. Anyone who cannot remember further back than his or her own birth is an orphan. Our past and heritage remind us that we are not orphans, but we are heirs of a great inheritance. We are part of a grand On Memorial Day, there will be a remembering of the sacrifices that others have made on our behalf.

There will be a remembering of heroes who loved their country more than themselves and who regretted having only one life to give for freedom’s purchase price.

There will be a remembering of that great document penned on July 4, 1776, not for nostalgia’s sake, but to prevent us from becoming orphans by letting it guide and nurture us as we continue in the unfinished story of freedom.

There will be a remembering of proud parents who often struggled so that we might have a better life.

There will be a remembering of classrooms pregnant with knowledge and caring teachers acting as midwives.

There will be a remembering of spirit-filled people with outrageous hopes and uplifting things to say.

There will be a remembering of grandparents, aunts and uncles mothers and fathers, children and friends, and fresh cut flowers perfuming the air as you knelt by a grave.

There will be a remembering of a desperate voice of one crying out for memorial: “Remember me!” There will be a remembering of Jesus’ reply: “Today, you will be with me in Paradise.” It was the first Memorial Day - a day of peace and healing.

There will be a remembering and for that we give our thanks to God for those who once were protectors and comrades of our way. And for Christ’s love that has given them the joys of His eternal new day.


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