For Those Whose Every Day is Memorial Day

Several of my colleagues eloquently addressed Memorial Day 2023 on its occurrence. Duke, Susie Moore, and Brandon Morse among others wrote posts well worth the read. I urge you to go through each of them, along with encouraging you, if you haven’t already, to become a VIP member so we can keep high-quality content coming your way.


Back in August 2021, I shared a letter written in 1966 by my oldest brother when he was serving in Vietnam. He sent it to my father, himself a World War Two veteran. It reads as follows:

12 November 1966

Dear Dad,

What I am going to say will be most unpleasant, but we just spent a hell of a night up here at Tai Ninh. Here’s what happened.

At 9:00, the Viet Cong hit our position with heavy mortar, recoilless rifle, and rifle grenade fire. We hit the bunker and stayed until 10:15 when the attack was over.  A flare ship started illuminating the sky, but one was a dud. It hit the aviation section tent, but it hit a man who had been in Vietnam less than a month. The force practically scalped him, and the flare ignited. The man was killed instantly. I ran over there, just after the attack with a jug of water to help put out the fire caused by the flare. Quite a bit of damage was done to the inside of the tent. Men with fire extinguishers and me with my water jug (which had just been filled) tried to put out the flare (which is next to impossible.) The flare started exploding, so we hit the ground. After that, somebody said that a man was hurt badly. I went over to see if he needed some water, but he was dead when I got there. The sight was unnerving.

We finally hit the sack after midnight. Then at two o’clock in the morning, they really mortared us.  We lost twelve men, WIA, two seriously (Both should live.) A mortar round landed three feet from our communications tent and RTT van. The attack lasted until three-thirty. After the attack, I was detailed to wash the blood from the inside of the RTT van. I won’t go into any gory details of either event.

I came out without a scratch. I did not panic nor was there any extreme fear on my part. One never knows how he will react to an emergency.

Our battery suffered 25% casualties during the attack. I am all right, and they moved heavy artillery in this morning, 155mm SP howitzers, to protect against another attack tonight. We should get some sleep tonight. I hope that I never have to write another letter like this again. The danger has passed, so be thankful that I pulled through OK, and go to Aunt Beth & Hazel’s house for Thanksgiving. You have a lot to be thankful for.

With love,


The new Cephas Hour episode addresses Christ’s ministry to those who are unable to let Memorial Day be but a once-a-year occurrence. It also talks about ministering to yourself when it’s high time to get out of Dodge, and those who attempt to use God strictly for monetary gain.

You can listen to the show on-demand at its website. It is also available in podcast form through Amazon, Apple, AudacyGoogle, iHeart,, and TuneIn. Hope it helps, and thanks.



It was a yearly routine, me calling my father on Memorial Day and wishing him a happy Memorial Day, then immediately adding, “Except it isn’t a happy day at all, now is it.” He would reply, “No, son, it isn’t.”

My father flew in B-29s in bombing raids over Japan during World War II. My oldest brother fought on the ground in Vietnam. Both have since graduated to glory in Christ’s eternal presence. Each talked some about their experiences, but only a little. The horrors of battle, and the pain of seeing friends die before their eyes, were not topics they cared to delve into at length. For which one can hardly blame them.

We often remind ourselves and each other that Memorial Day is not an occasion for picnics and barbecues but rather a day set aside for flags and wreaths laid at the graves of those who died so we might live in freedom. This is good and necessary to remember. However, it is even more essential to remember that while for us Memorial Day is but one day a year, for those who fought alongside those who died, every day is Memorial Day. Every day carries the memories of those lost. This is not something from which one simply snaps their fingers, sings “hey nonny nonny,” and gets on with it.


Thankfully, we have a Savior Who understands loss; the Man of Sorrows, well-acquainted with grief. He can comfort even the deepest battle-scarred veteran, along with all of us who know loss on a civilian level. Through Him, we have the ability to comfort one another even as He directly comforts us. This is something we must always remember. Jesus endured the tragedy of the Cross so He could enjoy the triumph of the empty tomb. In this, and in Him, there is solace.



The book of James, otherwise known as the gospel according to Debbie Downer, is quite the expositional tongue-lashing. Its harsh but necessary railing regarding how faith minus action is meaningless rings true throughout the centuries, whether it be royal rulers commissioning massive ornate churches while the peasants they ruled starved or telling someone on social media who is struggling with finances or other life issues that you’ll pray for them without offering to lend a hand of direct assistance.

The notion that if someone is in a bad situation, you should offer genuine assistance so they can get out of it also applies to ourselves. It’s one thing to be going through a rough patch and say, “Okay, this is a trial, but I’m trusting our Lord to see me through.” It’s another to be standing in the middle of a railroad track with a train barreling toward you at full speed and not say, “I’m thinking I should get my happy self out of here.” Faith is never unrealistic. Sometimes, the person you most need to lend a direct charitable hand to … is yourself.




In his first letter to Timothy, the apostle Paul wrote, “Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Few sins the allegedly righteous commit are more heinous than accumulating wealth from proclaiming the gospel. The smug and self-satisfied, preaching to the choir while demanding a generous love offering from the congregation, are an abomination in our Lord’s sight.

Even as James tells us that faith without works is dead, so are works without a foundation of humility and servitude to Christ and others. Money may bring peace of mind as far as knowing you can pay the bills, but it will never bring peace of heart nor add to your genuine value found solely in Christ. Remember what Jesus said about judgment day:

“Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’”



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