“Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.”
Today we remember those who have made sacrifices for the good of others…
The firefighters and police officers and others who perished in the 9/11 attacks, many because they ran toward the disaster in order to save the lives of others…
We also remember the soldiers who went to war in the aftermath of the attacks and returned wounded, or not at all, as well as their families, who lost so much.
Today we also honor all of the innocent victims of the attacks and of wars, who were just in the wrong place at the wrong time, simply just trying to live their lives.
As parents, we know something about sacrificing for the good of others…our children. It is what any good parent would do, to put the well being of their children first, in order to ensure that they live good lives, and go to become good people.
As single parents, we may have had to sacrifice our careers, our financial security, and may have had to give up some of our personal hopes and dreams, all for the good of our children.
However, if we really look at our lives and at the choices we have made for our children, we can see that we have gained so much in return for any sacrifices we have had to make.
We have gained love, and fulfillment that we may would not have received from money or a job. We have explored parts of the world and life we would not have gotten to see no matter how much traveling we might have done if we did not take on this responsibility, and as parents, we have known joys greater than any party or night out at a club.
In return for our sacrifices we have been given the gift of seeing a new person on the planet grow towards adulthood! We have helped them through the challenges of life, from learning to walk to discovering love and suffering through it’s loss. We have gained a new appreciation for life, it’s joys and it’s heartache, and through our sacrifices, we have given a gift to the future…our children, who will one day be called to make sacrifices themselves, and perhaps, when that time comes, they will be more willing to do so because of our example.
Of course, sacrifice takes strength and faith, and we have strength in abundance, as we share our faith with those around us! Together with our children, and with those close to us, we can share the faith that we need to make these sacrifices and make them work, so that they are not in vain, but are gifts to a brighter future! Gifts that shine with the power of God’s love for all of us!!
Let us Pray,
God, thank you for the sacrifices that you have made for us, and for the world. Without the love and grace you have given to us through Christ we would be lost and alone. Please help us to make the most of our gifts, as we honor those who have given so much to us. Let us take what we have been given, and share these things with our children and our future.