How do you begin a letter of gratitude to a person you’ve never met but whose decisions have provided the very way of life you know?
For people who are usually not short on words, we are at a loss for how to do justice to the sacrifice you have made and continue to make daily.
So we begin with a simple…
Those two little words seems too weak a phrase to fully contain the gratitude for your days of service and sacrifice… Thank you for every holiday you missed away from your family table and for every birthday you celebrated in a hot desert, cold foxhole, or muggy rice field. Thank you that, though you’ve never seen my face or spent days admiring the sweet baby cheeks of the little ones I call mine, you live your life to allow us the freedom to choose our schools, worship our God, and play safely in backyard tree houses. Thank you that we can tuck sleepy babies into bed at night knowing that their tomorrow is bright and open to countless opportunities thanks to your tireless days and nights spent thousands of of miles away from your own little ones…. Above all, thank you for doing all of these things because you wanted to and because your passion for this country and our freedoms outweigh all else.
Thank you for being braver and more selfless than we can even imagine.
Because you do your job so well, it can seem to fly under the radar. We go about our days confident that our freedoms are safe and that our tomorrow is secure. You do your job so well that we sometimes forget to send out the massive thank you that it deserves but know that it is never taken for granted. Our boys stand up a little straighter when they see a soldier – a hero with skin on – pass by on the street and our girls look in awe at the brave women who serve our country in ways not possible 15 years ago. We tell them about what an honorable decision it is to do what you do and we pray for you to rest in your own beds again soon. We ask God to protect you in every possible way and to love extra on your families back home.
Dear wives, children, parents, aunts, uncles, friends, and every family member of a solder….
Thank you for YOUR sacrifice… Thank you for allowing and supporting their decision to join the military and serve their country.
Thank you for pulling extra shifts as a ‘single parent’ while they are away and for being joyful for a Skype date on your anniversary instead of a romantic dinner. Thank you for celebrating holidays late and for moving ten times in twenty-five years of military service. Thank you for letting a country borrow your husband, wife, son, daughter, friend and for being so willing to accept every way that effects your entire family. Please make sure that your children know that we speak for the thousands of Americans everywhere when we say that their mom or dad is a hero and braver than we can even fathom.
To our veterans, every bit of this letter is to you as well. The wars and conflicts you so bravely contended in decades ago make up the history that has shaped our world. You are part of a generation who we look on with honor and admiration…
Finally, to every solider, active, retired, reservist….
Thank you that you take this verse to heart and live it out in a way most of us can’t begin to dream. Thank you, friend, for every moment of your service and we thank our Father for putting breath in your lungs… Happy Memorial Day.
Greater love has no man than this, that one lays down his life for his friends… John 15:13
Endless blessings and love…
Your Philanthropy Family