Many will celebrate this Memorial Day as the unofficial start of summer. Temperatures are rising (at least in theory), school is out, and pools are open. These are things worth celebrating for sure, but Memorial Day is about something far greater. It’s about remembering and honoring the men and women who have laid down their lives in service of the United States military–women and men who, along with their families, made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of this nation and its way of life. So, I would encourage you today as you gather with family and friends to take the time to remember those who have made such gatherings possible.
And as we remember and honor those for whom Memorial Day exists, Paul’s words to Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:3-4 call us to learn from their dedication and resolve, “Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him.” Ultimately, the call is for us to remember the first man to lay down His life for us–Jesus (v. 8)–and then to live a life that honors His sacrifice:
 So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.  Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels.  And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil,  correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth,  and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.2 Timothy 2:22-26, ESV
As Paul reminds Timothy of Jesus, he points us clearly to the one who enlisted us–one who walked in righteousness, love, peace, truth, kindness, patience, and gentleness and invites us to do the same.