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Giving Honor... Remembering Sacrifice

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One Sunday morning, the pastor noticed little Alex staring up at the large plaque that hung in the foyer of the church. The plaque was covered with names, and small American flags were mounted on either side of it. The seven year-old had been staring at the plaque for some time, so the pastor walked up, stood beside him and said quietly, “Good morning, Alex.”
Good morning, Pastor,” replied the young man, still focused on the plaque. “Pastor McGhee, what is this?” Alex asked.
“Well, son, it’s a memorial to all the men and women who have died in the service.”
Soberly, they stood together, staring at the large plaque. Little Alex’s voice was barely audible when he finally managed to ask, “Which service pastor, 9 or 10:45 ?

We Remember those who sacrifice.

Memorial Day is a time each year when we pause to remember those who gave their lives for family, friends and freedom. We honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
One week after the Pearl Harbor attack President Franklin D. Roosevelt said,
Those who long enjoy such privileges that we enjoy forget in time that others have died to win them.” Freedom is never really free; it’s almost always bought with the blood of patriots.” FDR
Memorial Day is about honoring those who have sacrificed everything to give us the freedom we enjoy.
This is one of the things that we still do right on most places in our country… at least now. We give honor to those who deserve to be honored…
Military Members who fought and fight to protect our way of life.
First Responders who protect our freedoms here at home.
Parents who sacrifice so much to make sure their children are raised properly.
Civil Authorities who have the responsibility to govern our cities, our states and our nation.
Elderly who have sacrificed to give us a better opportunity than they had at the American Dream.
Since it’s Memorial Day, We want not just honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice, but to honor those who have served or are serving in the military.
Have veterans stand.
Have people stand who have a family member or friend who served and paid the ultimate sacrifice.
Stand if you have a family member living or deceased who serve in the military.
Someone wrote,
It is the VETERAN, not the preacher,
Who has given us freedom of religion.
It is the VETERAN, not the reporter,
Who has given us freedom of the press.
It is the VETERAN, not the poet,
Who has given us freedom of speech.
It is the VETERAN, not the campus organizer,
Who has given us freedom to assemble.
It is the VETERAN, not the lawyer,
Who has given us the right to a fair trial.
It is the VETERAN, not the politician,
Who has given us the right to vote
We honor you today. Honor means to hold someone in high esteem or to give them great respect.
While today we honor our fallen and current veterans, the Bible expands honor.
Romans 13:1–7 NLT
1 Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. 2 So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. 3 For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. 4 The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. 5 So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience. 6 Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.

We honor our soldiers & First Responders who sacrifice everything.

We should honor or respect those who have fought and died to give us the freedom to complain about our gov. Most nations in our world, if you talked about the leadership like so many do on twitter, in the news, etc, you would be executed.
We honor those who fought for our freedom. They sacrificed time and energy to train… time away from their families while deployed… and many sacrificed their lives.
In the OT, when the armies of Israel would win in battle they would march back to the cheering crowds at home.
A friend of mine was coming back from Vietnam. He landed and was walking through the airport and noticed a kid smiling and waving at him. It felt good for a minute then the mother of that child grabbed the child by the arm and drug him away from this Veteran, fresh from the war, drug him away all the while giving my friend a look he did not deserve. You see, the news media call our soldiers baby killers and all sorts of derogatory names during the war and after the war.
This is a period of our history I am ashamed of. But today we want to honor those who sacrificed a lot so we could have freedom.
Listen to me. I don’t care who you are and where you stand on war. Our warriors deserve honor and to be treated with honor. If you don’t like a war, take it up with the leaders who sent them into war, but NEVER take it out on the warriors. Our nation should be ashamed of how we treated Vietnam vets...
Honor our soldiers.

We want to honor those who are older.

You might be old if...
You remember penny candy.
You ever used green stamps
You bought gas at .30 per gallon.
If it takes two tries to get off the couch.
If when you bend over to tie your shoes, you look around to make sure that there is nothing else to do while you are down there.
Your knees buckle but your belt will not.
It looks like you have more patience, but actually, you just don’t care anymore.
You confuse a clear conscience with a bad memory.
Your pharmacists knows your name when you walk in.
Your contacts mostly begin with Dr.
Your idea of a night out is sitting on the patio.
You stop searching for the meaning of life to focus on finding your car keys.
You hear your favorite song on the elevator.
The candles on your birthday cake cost more than the cake.
It’s okay to get older… we don’t have much choice. Solomon said …
Proverbs 16:31 NLT
31 Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained by living a godly life.
secretary said on men grey looks dignified… on you it just looks old.
Too many people are cast away by society then they grow older. (Nursing Homes) There was a time in our society that children ate last… My friends and I at the Milner’s eating in the basement.
Once our society was moving towards pushing people out of companies when they aged. Now there is a move to pull them back and keep them because of their experience.

We want to honor civil leaders.

Romans 13:1 NLT
1 Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God.
I do believe that we are under no requirement by God to obey a law or policy of the government that clearly violates scripture. Those causes will be rare.
1 Peter 2:17 NLT
17 Respect everyone, and love the family of believers. Fear God, and respect the king.
Respect everyone. Give value to other people. We need to be value adders to people in our lives.
When Peter told the readers of this book to respect the government, he was speaking of the Roman Emperor Nero, who was a wicked person and killed Christians trying to eradicate them. He did not mean that we are to violate our consciences… remember Peter said
Acts 5:29 NLT
29 But Peter and the apostles replied, “We must obey God rather than any human authority.
But he obviously believed that for the most part Christians could live according to the law of their land.
Today, there are Christians all over the world and some live in freedom while others are persecuted.
We just need to make sure that when we are persecuted, it’s because of Jesus … not bad behavior.
We should pray for our nation and our leaders.
Jeremiah 29:7 NLT
7 And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.”
Here in the USA, we have a unique form of government. We are to respect these offices. It may seem hard to do, but we must pray for our leaders.

We want to honor our parents.

Exodus 20:12 NLT
12 “Honor your father and mother. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
Parents make many sacrifices for their kids.
mama and daddy splitting a coke.
Ephesians 6:1–3 NLT
1 Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do. 2 “Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise: 3 If you honor your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.”
ILL - 3rd Grade SS Teacher. She taught the class they were to honor their father and mother and showed them the verses in the Bible. Then she asked, are there any verses that show you how to treat your brothers or sisters? One little boy said, yea… You shall not kill...
Dear Abby: “I am a 15 year old and my biggest problem is my mother. All she does is nag, nag, nag. From morning till night, it is, turn off the TV. Do your homework. Wash behind your neck. Stand up straight. Go clean your room. How can I get her off my case?” (Signed) Pick, Pick, Pick.
Abby’s Response: “Dear Picky: Turn off the TV. Do your homework. Wash behind your neck. Stand up straight. Go clean up your room.”
Parents support you in need.
Ephesians 6:4 NLT
4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction that comes from the Lord.
Parental discipline should help children learn to live right, not provoke them and frustrate them or beat them down emotionally.
Someone wrote, Parents take care of their babies and one day babies care for parents.
Be kind to your kids, they will choose your nursing home.
A study once disclosed that
If both Mom and Dad attend church regularly, 72 percent of their children remain faithful in attendance. If only Dad attends regularly, 55 percent remain faithful. If only Mom attends regularly, 15 percent remain faithful. If neither attend regularly, only 6 percent remain faithful.
Parents, make sure you are setting the example for your kids.

We are to honor our spouses.

Ephesians 5:21 NLT
21 And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Submit is to honor…
1 Peter 3:7 NLT
7 In the same way, you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.

We are to honor and show honor to the Lord.

Jesus made the biggest sacrifice ever. He lived in the glories fo heaven but came to earth where he lived life and was crucified for yours and my sins.
Philippians 2:9–11 NLT
9 Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
1 Timothy 1:17 NLT
17 All honor and glory to God forever and ever! He is the eternal King, the unseen one who never dies; he alone is God. Amen.
Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice when he died on the cross for our sins.
All honor leads us to honor God because he is worthy of honor.
Psalm 29:2 NLT
2 Honor the Lord for the glory of his name. Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness.

How do we show honor for God?

We honor God in our conduct.
Romans 12:1–2 NLT
1 And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him. 2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
Instead of living a life filled with sin, we are to give our bodies… our desires to Him. Our bodies holds our minds, our emotions, our thoughts, our desires, and our plans… all we have to offer really. So our body here represents the whole person. We are to give our whole being to Jesus.
That means we act differently than the other folks who do not know Jesus.
We honor God through our Faith.
Hebrews 11:6 NLT
6 And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
We have to believe he exists and pursue a personal relationship with him. Sometimes we will not understand, but we walk by faith.
I believe in order to understand. Augustine.
IOW, we have to begin with faith.
We honor God through our humility.
Isaiah 66:2 NLT
2 My hands have made both heaven and earth; they and everything in them are mine. I, the Lord, have spoken! “I will bless those who have humble and contrite hearts, who tremble at my word.
We honor God through choosing to submit to him.
by choosing to follow him and to obey him.
James 1:22 NLT
22 But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.
We honor God by giving back what he has already given.
Proverbs 3:9 NLT
9 Honor the Lord with your wealth and with the best part of everything you produce.
God says to give him the first and best part, not the left overs of your time, your talent and your treasure. Most people give after they pay their bills showing that their God is their stuff. When you give your first and best, you show that God is first and you honor him.
Trans to altar time.
Honoring God begins with a simple step of faith. Here is what you have to know.

1. God loves you and wants a personal relationship with you!

He loves you and wants a personal relationship with you.
John 3:16 NLT
16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

2. Your sin keeps you from having a personal relationship with him.

Everyone has sinned
Romans 3:23 NLT
23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.
Isaiah 59:2 NLT
2 It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.
Sin earned us the death penalty.
Romans 6:23 NLT
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

3. Only through Jesus Christ can you have a personal relationship with God

John 14:6 NLT
6 Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.
Jesus is the only one who died to pay the penalty for your sins.
1 Peter 3:18 NLT
18 Christ suffered for our sins once for all time. He never sinned, but he died for sinners to bring you safely home to God. He suffered physical death, but he was raised to life in the Spirit.
Jesus rose from the dead to prove he paid the price and to give us new life.
1 Corinthians 15:3–6 NLT
3 I passed on to you what was most important and what had also been passed on to me. Christ died for our sins, just as the Scriptures said. 4 He was buried, and he was raised from the dead on the third day, just as the Scriptures said. 5 He was seen by Peter and then by the Twelve. 6 After that, he was seen by more than 500 of his followers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died.
You can know all of that. You can come to church every day, but

4. You must personally respond by trusting Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord.

John 1:12 NLT
12 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.
You turn from sin to Jesus.
Acts 3:19 NLT
19 Now repent of your sins and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped away.
Ephesians 2:8–9 NLT
8 God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.
To receive Jesus means to
Turn to God from your way of living.
Inviting Jesus to come into your life and trust him to forgive your sin.
Allowing God to direct your life.

5. Your trust in Jesus begins a life long relationship

Hebrews 13:5 NLT
5 Don’t love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, “I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.”
Colossians 2:6–7 NLT
6 And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.
God I know my sin has separated me from you. Thank you that Jesus sacrificed himself and paid the price for my sin. I ask Jesus to come into my life and forgive my sin. Please direct my life and give the ability to obey you...
Here are some things you can do to grow.
Learn everything you can about Jesus. 2 Peter 3:18
2 Peter 3:18 NLT
18 Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. All glory to him, both now and forever! Amen.
Study the Bible
Pray
Gert involved in the church
Obey God in every area of your life. Jn 14:15
John 14:15 NLT
15 “If you love me, obey my commandments.
He knows what’s best for you.
Rely on the Holy Spirit Gal 5:16-17
Galatians 5:16–17 NLT
16 So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. 17 The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions.
He will lead you and guide you.
Decide to be like Jesus. Col 3:10
Colossians 3:10 NLT
10 Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.
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