Are we soldiers?

I don't tend to use military word pictures much because, perhaps wrongly, I wonder how they connect with half the population. This one did with me so much, that I hope it does with you because it speaks to us raising our eyes and seeing that the way we will love is by knowing we are in a battle and being in the battle. 

From We Were Soldiers Once...and Young by Harold Moore and Joe Galloway. 

“In thy faint slumbers I by thee have watched, and heard thee murmur tales of iron wars” Shakespeare Henry IV

“We went to war because our country asked us to go, because our new President ordered us to go, but more importantly because we saw it as our duty to go. That is one kind of love. 

Another, and far more transcendent love, came to us unbidden on the battlefields, as it does on every battlefield in every war man has ever fought. 

We discovered, in that hellish place where death was our constant companion, that we loved each other. We killed for each other, we died for each other and we wept for each other. And in time we came to love each other as brothers. 

In battle, our world shrank to the man on our left and the man on our right and....the enemy all around. We held each other's lives in our hands and we learned to share our fears, our hopes, our dreams as readily as we shared what little else good came our way.

We were John Kennedy's young stalwarts of the 1960's. He told the world that Americans would go anywhere, pay any price, bear any burden in the defense of freedom. We were the down payment on that costly contract, but the man who signed it was not there when we fulfilled his promise. He waited for us on a hill in Arlington National Cemetery, and in time, by the thousands, we came to fill those slopes with our white marble markers.

Among us were old veterans and young enlistees. The majority were draftees, 19- and 20-year-old boys summoned from all across America by their local Selective Service Boards.”

We too have been drafted, all types, our Leader made a promise, and went to a place harder and better than Arlington. We will join Him. We are not the first down payment on that contract. We are the current payment though. Look to your left and to your right.  If you are doing war with that person, in time you will come to love them. The mission is part of the process by which we learn to love one another. Blessings