The statistics for the number of people serving in the military are very low compared to the actual population since the end of the draft. I understand that life gets in the way and the military is not for everyone. However, we all benefit from our military and seldom think about the sacrifices that have been made for our freedoms. When I served, it was during a time of relative peace. I served in the Cold War with minor engagements. Our fight was mainly against terrorists.  I was discharged from reserve duty right before we went into Iraq for the first Gulf War. Since the Revolutionary War though, we have only had 25 years of no military action. Twenty-five years of peace, and the rest of the time our military has been called to risk their lives for our freedom. I would like you to seriously consider that statement. Twelve main conflicts but it seems that we were fighting around the world for the majority of our country’s history.

We send people to fight and die all around the world. We are perilously close to another World War right now with Russia because of their illegal invasion of Ukraine. Most of us will celebrate the Fourth of July with fireworks and BBQ. Some of us will be thinking about those of our fellow service members who have to celebrate another holiday alone, missing their families. I know because I spend so many holidays without my family.

As Christians, we know the sacrifices that Jesus made for all of us, including giving his life for all of humanity. We are asking our service members to be willing to do the same for the Freedoms we all enjoy as Americans. I want all of you to remember all who have sacrificed this Independence Day. Lift up a prayer to Jesus giving our thanks and include one for our service members who will be alone, in an unfamiliar country this Independence Day.

Rev. Dr. Candace Barron
Beebe FUMC
US ARMY Military Police Officer, 81-87,
Fort McClellan, Yuma Proving Grounds, Fischbach Germany, 21st Support Command PSD Team for Lt. General Bruen, Commander. Active duty. Ft. Worth Texas, Reserves.