Something strange happened to me the other day. Well, it wasn't necessarily strange, just unexpected. My five-year-old son likes to tag along with me everywhere, so he was happy to run errands. We stopped by the bank where he got a lollipop and popcorn. Then it was on to City Hall to pay a utility bill. Our Civic Building is a beautiful historical building with classic architecture. As soon as we walked in he asked if we could take the stairs all the way to the top, so we did. After climbing the four stories, the descent put us at the opposite door we came in, which empties into Civic Center Park. There, you will find a couple of memorials. One to fallen police officers, and the one pictured here for three fallen soldiers. We ventured out into the park in the nice weather, and since it was Memorial Day weekend, I decided to stop our jovial stroll and pause and look at this memorial. My son asked, "Daddy, what's that for?" I told him, "That's for soldiers who died protecting our country." He replied, "What soldiers?" So, I stopped my rush of errands a little longer to read the plaques. I have been to this park many times, and I'd seen this memorial, and I knew it was for fallen soldiers. This was the first time I put faces with the statues. We looked at each photo on the three plaques, and I read each one out loud to my son. Some liquid started flowing from my eyes. I felt it. These young me would be about my age with parents, families, and friends like me. I felt the loss our community must have experienced to inspire this memorial. These lives are still meaningful. Be sure to pause and remember more than just fallen soldiers in general. Feel it.
I am a United Methodist Pastor, but I'm trying to re-define that as a Missionary sent to my corner of the USA. What would it look like for you to envision your life as a Christian more like a Missionary than a Church-goer?