Why do we gather at the war memorial and in the village church on Remembrance Sunday? Here are three good reasons:
To thank people. Our armed forces (and many other people too) have been willing to put the safety and freedom of others above their own safety and freedom. They laid down their lives for us and we ought to remember to be thankful. Previous generations committed us to this when they promised, ‘We will remember them’.
To thank God. The Lord has shown great kindness to us as a nation. We are far from guiltless and yet God has given to us peace and prosperity beyond all we deserve. Defence is something we must work hard at, but it is also true that the rise and fall of nations is the Lord’s work. Moses told the people of his day not to “forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them.” (Deuteronomy 4:9)
Because we’re in danger. Just as we struggle to live peacefully with those in our families or in our village so, as a nation, we find it hard to live peacefully with ourselves and with other nations. Dispute and conflict is never far away; so we ask God for the gift of peace and prosperity.
And that is not an impossible dream. The Son of God was born as a human being on our planet and not some other. He was born as one of us to be King of us. Since laying down his life for his friends the risen Lord Jesus has been sending the life-changing announcement of his advancing kingdom to the ends of the earth.
“All kings will bow down to him and all nations will serve him. For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no-one to help. He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death. He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight.” (Psalm 72:11-14)
King Jesus is just the man to turn to when we need help as a nation, or as individuals. That’s what we’ll be doing on Sunday 10th November and you are warmly welcome too.