Honor our flag

James McClung wrote an article that I read and set aside for Flag Day. He titled it, “What does the American Flag Symbolize to You?”

As the wind lifted its edges and unfurled it majestically into the early morning sky, a young lawyer was moved to write a poem expressing his elation that it was still there in 1814.

After nearly 6,000 Marines were killed and 17,000 wounded, it was secured to a length of iron pipe and proudly raised on Iwo Jima in World War II.

It’s colors shone brightly when it was planted on the moon in 1969.

Though ripped an scarred by the senseless attack on Sept. 11, 2001, it was lifted high above the rubble of the World Trade Center — strong and defiant in the face of unspeakable tragedy.

When 2002 Olympic athletes paraded it reverently through the cold, starry night in Salt Lake City, millions of people were moved to tears.

It is our nation’s flag — the “Star-Spangled Banner,” “Old Glory,” “The Stars and Stripes” — and a symbol of America’s greatness. June 14 is Flag Day in our nation — a day to celebrate the official birthday of our nation’s flag and to express appreciation for what it signifies to each us. Flag Day parades are held across the nation and we express our patriotism by displaying the flag outside our homes and businesses.

The first Flag Day celebration was held June 14, 1861, at Hartford, Connecticut, during the Civil War. President Harry Truman signed an Act of Congress officially designating June 14 of each year as National Flag Day.

What does the American Flag symbolize to you? A common response is “freedom.” But many other words are used as well — liberty, allegiance, valor, love of country, pride, respect and honor.

As a Marine veteran it always touches me when the National Anthem is played and we stand at attention (not kneeling) with our hands over our hearts. To feel the love, devotion and respect we have for this revered symbol — our flag.

This helps us go back to our roots and rearrange the order of things — God and the Red, White and Blue.

God is everything and Jesus above is Savior. So when you see our flag this week — be reminded to thank God for our blessings! As Psalm 33:12 says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord …”

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