Value Their Liberty
TeenPact’s vision statement reads “TeenPact Leadership Schools seeks to inspire youth in their relationship with Christ and train them to understand the political process, value their liberty, defend the Christian faith, and engage the culture at a time in their lives when, typically, they do not care about such things.”
Today is Veteran’s Day, a day in which we should stop, step back, and consider the freedoms we have been given and the men and women who have sacrificed their normal, everyday lives to defend us. According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, sacrifice is defined as:
- destruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else
- something given up or lost
Those who have served our nation gave something up for the sake of serving and protecting us. Maybe it was a normal, suburban life. Maybe it was living in the same place for more than a few years, being near family members, or even youthful innocence lost in the destruction of war. Regardless, veterans gave something up in order to defend our freedoms, and allow us to live the life we live. TeenPact trains students to value their liberty, and with that, we ought to value those who have served and who have fought to defend our rights and liberties. Few people in the history of the world have had the opportunity to live as free people under self-government as we do. The men and women who sacrificed years of their lives protecting us and our freedoms deserve our respect for it.
“The men and women who sacrificed years of their lives protecting us and our freedoms deserve our respect for it.”
TeenPact emphasizes servant leadership. What is servant leadership? A servant leader is a person who is willing to lead the way by serving others in humility. As Christians, we look to Jesus as the ultimate example of being a servant leader; someone who was willing to give up everything in the service of those he loved, namely us. In the same way, those who have served in the armed forces were willing to sacrifice everything for us. Their sacrifices and willingness to serve us enables you and me to live our lives.
As a word of caution, I would warn the reader that our nation is not our savior.
We are not to glorify our nation, our freedoms, or their defenders above Christ Jesus, our savior. Indeed, the very freedom to worship and evangelize without persecution exists because of God’s gracious hand of providence. These freedoms have allowed the American Church, despite its faults, to assist our fellow believers in dangerous places, and to use our resources to spread the Gospel far and wide. We are able to study, discuss, and worship the Lord with no threat to our safety. We can pursue the arts, participate in government, and enjoy nature without worry of being arrested or dragged away. These rights and abilities are rare, if not unparalleled, in the history of the world. The men and women who defended our nation in the Armed Forces have made our unlikely liberty possible by defending us and our freedoms over the last 240 years.
TeenPact has numerous alumni who have gone on to serve their nation in the Armed Forces. Former students, staffers, interns and Program Directors such as Ben Solem, Thomas McGuire, Mike McGee, Fuzz Thompson, and numerous others who are currently serving, or formerly served, in the Armed Forces. We at TeenPact would like to thank them and all current and former members of the Armed Forces, for their sacrifice on behalf of our nation and our freedom.
We historically celebrate Veterans Day on November 11th to mark the anniversary of the end of hostilities of World War I. However, there should not have to be a particular day or month in which we honor our veterans. The next time you see a veteran, thank them for defending our liberty and our freedoms. Or, do more than say thanks. The next time you see a veteran in a restaurant, pick up their tab. Buy them coffee. Sit down; talk less, listen more. Write them a letter, thanking them for their service and their sacrifices. Help wives whose husbands and have been deployed, and befriend kids whose parents have gone to defend us. We owe our freedom to these incredibly sacrificial men and women, and we should never forget it.