We live in the best place on earth. Our nation is the best nation on earth. And our people are the most generous of all people on earth. You might be tempted to think of this as a little bit of heaven, right here on earth, but there is a problem.
Our nation is at war. We are fighting the most unorthodox enemy we have ever known, and perhaps the most deadly enemy. Why do I say that? Because those who we are fighting against have no fear of death. In fact, they relish the thought of dying while fighting for their beliefs.
Who are these people? They are the radical Muslims of the world. They hate all things Jewish or Western and their wish is not to just dominate over them but to destroy them completely. These are the people our young men and women are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places.
And let me be perfectly clear at this point: Our young men and women have chosen to go fight the enemy over there, so we would not have to fight them here.
I was watching a documentary on TV the other night. It showed clips of the different wars we have fought in the last 100 years, including the one we are fighting today. The uniforms and equipment have changed, and even the enemy has changed, but there has been one noticeable constant, and that is the dogged determination with which the American soldier performs his duty.
Col. Oliver North, "Col. Ollie" to many who have served under him, tells of a situation when we first went into Iraq. There were enemies shooting at each other from across a large field. That field was a no-man’s land. And in the middle of that field was a very injured Iraqi man.
A corpsman crawled out to that Iraqi man and dragged him back behind the American troops so he could work on him. A foreign correspondent asked the medic what kind of an idiot he was. He said, "Can’t you see that is an Iraqi?" Col. North said the corpsman looked up at the correspondent and yelled, "Yeah! I see htat, but can you see he’s injured? We are Americans. That is what we do!"
Tomorrow, we will celebrate our nation’s Memorial Day. That is the day we set apart to honor soldiers like that corpsman. We honor all the living soldiers because they, too, made severe sacrifices for all of us, but we also honor those fallen soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice. We enjoy the freedoms we have today only because those men and women were willing to step up and be responsible enough to fight for them.
But as we look back into our past, we see that America has been in conflict since her beginnings. We often talk about Christians having many storms in their lives, but we see that our nation has had many storms in her great life, too.
But as we see the many conflicts we have endured, we cannot help but also see the many blessings God has given us, too. It is vital to remember that we have received those blessings only because we have chosen, as a nation, to walk with God and to honor His glorious name.
But is that what America is doing today? As a nation, we have chosen to oust God from every corner of our lives. And, in the past, if we have received blessings because we honored Him, what is in store for us now, as we live a life that dishonors Him?