Friday, November 11, 2011

He Sacrificed His Leg by Gail Purath

"Would you mind carrying my food tray?” the young soldier asked me.

We were in the cafeteria at Walter Reed Military Hospital, and this young soldier needed my help because he only had one leg.

That same morning my husband and I had seen a score of others like him, young soldiers in their twenties recovering from amputations and other serious war injuries. It’s easy to forget about the war in Iraq until we're faced with people who will carry its scars the rest of their lives.

Being the wife of a career soldier for 22 years, I was forced from time to time to consider the costs of military service.
When we lived in Germany 25 years ago:
  • I knew that at a minute’s’ notice I could be whisked onto an evacuation plane while my husband fought the very real Communist threat across the border.
  • I also realized that plane might not make it out of Germany.
  • My husband Michael spent four months every year training away from home, often missing birthdays and holidays. When home, he worked 60 hours a week.
  • Frequently the phone rang in the middle of the night, and Michael hurried onto post for an alert not knowing until he arrived if the threat was real.
  • Our presence brought hatred from some groups. I once had to answer our seven year-old son’s worried questions about anti-American bomb threats in our housing area.
  • Phone rates at that time were prohibitive, and there was no email to connect us to our loved ones in the U.S.
I sometimes questioned whether those sacrifices were worth it.

But they were so very insignificant compared to the price paid by this young soldier who asked us to carry his tray that day at Walter Reed.

I’m not sure how I feel about the war in Iraq; but I know how I feel about men and women who are willing to fight for a cause in which they believe. And I’m challenged by their example.
  • What sacrifices am I willing to make for the Kingdom of God?
  • What price am I willing to pay for the One who paid the ultimate price for me? 
I will probably never be asked to die for Christ or give up my arm or leg in His service, but will I be faithful when I’m asked to make easier sacrifices?

“Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs—he wants to please his commanding officer.” 2 Tim. 2:3,4

Read Gail's bio on WOW Lead Writers page.
For another Veteren's Day Thought by Gail, see: Freedom to Love Our Enemies (this will only take you one minute to read).


  1. Gail,

    Thanks for this thought provoking devotion on serving in the military. It made me stop and thank God for the men and women who have sacrificed their lives and families for the freedom we have today. Please thank Michael for his investment for this I will call my dad today and thank him for his service during the Korean War.

    Many blessings,

  2. Thanks, Ann. Great idea to call your dad!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...