You all probably know I run late…constantly….so no big surprise I was a day off on the big Red Cup controversy…even though for the first time in AGES I was actually in a Starbucks that day while all the internet was abuzz with comments and such…I was blissfully ignorant and so excited they had the Christmas Blend in a pour over that I actually hummed a Christmas tune as I headed to the car with what I thought was a festive red and green cup filled with holiday cheer….clueless might be my middle name.
And now I am a day late on a Veteran’s Day post…though I certainly was deeply touched by all the tributes on social media yesterday for those who have served our country now and in the past. Loved the pictures of so many dear ones and their friends and relatives in the armed forces.
My dad was career Air Force and probably bled red, white and blue. He was not known for warm fuzzies, but the man flat out bawled every time they played the National Anthem. He retired when I was in 3rd grade, but he wore his Mess Dress Uniform for both of his daughter’s weddings and we buried him 5 years ago in his Service Uniform because…it just seemed right and fitting for the man.
I started Kindergarten at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha where we lived in base housing several blocks from the school. About the same distance in the opposite direction was my dad’s office, located adjacent to the air strip where the Looking Glass planes took off and flew over the country 24 hours a day. Every day.
If you never heard of it, Looking Glass was part of our nation’s defense system back in the dark ages of the early 60’s. In case of nuclear attack, the planes assigned to this program were equipped to become the command center for the military. There was a plane in the air 24 hours a day with another plane fully equipped, poised on the runway ready for takeoff around the clock.
As a little girl, it was a normal part of our day to hear one plane take off as the other landed and it birthed in me a sense of security and trust that all was well.
Nothing could happen to America because Looking Glass was in the air.
I guess you can imagine how that early foundation of faith has been tested over the years as I have watched enemies from without and within rip away the false sense of security a 5 year old placed in a plane that flew maneuvers over the midwest 24/7 back in 1963.
I am so thankful that my parents also taught me about the God who watches over me every single day. All day. Day after day.
I am thankful for the Bible stories and the hymns sung on long car rides and the bedtime prayers.
I am thankful for sitting in church next to my dad on Sundays when he wore a suit and tie and carried sour ball candies in his pocket to entertain a bored daughter who leaned against his arm.
I am thankful for a glow-in-the-dark plastic cutout of Jesus as a Shepherd that gathered light somehow during the day and lit my night stand til I fell asleep, and the real live Shepherd that continues to lead me and light my way.
I am thankful for countless Sunday School teachers, youth group leaders, prayer warriors, authors and the Body of Christ worldwide that has taught me, loved me, inspired me, corrected me and journeyed with me.
So as we salute those who have sacrificed much for freedom here and around the world: I am very thankful for those who have given their lives to keep me safe.
And I am eternally grateful…literally…for the One who gave His life to save me.