Every flag has a name
One of my brothers is an Air Force pilot and came home from a tour in Afghanistan just a few weeks ago. My other brother was in the Army, and he too came home from the Middle East many years ago. My father came home from his Army tour in Vietnam before I was born, and my grandfather came home from his Army tour in Italy before my father was born.
This weekend, our church displayed 38,000 flags on our campus in memory of every fallen Texas service member from the creation of the Republic of Texas in 1836 to the present. The site was beautiful, heartbreaking, and convicting, and all I could think was, “Thank you, God, that they came home.”
I know what it’s like to watch the news and wonder what this event or that event means for your family member in uniform. Will he be shipped out again? Will he be gone another Christmas? Will he be in danger? Will he come home from this one?
But I don’t know what it’s like to have an Army chaplain knock on your door, to greet a flag-draped casket at an airport, or to have a folded flag presented to a family dressed in black.
These flags not only remind me of the moms, dads, siblings, and children these 38,000 men and women left behind, they also remind me of God’s hand of protection on my own family.
Every flag has a name, and if one of those names belongs to one of your family members, please know that my thankful heart grieves with your broken heart.
I cannot imagine.