The Germans signing of the Armistice Treaty in the early hours of the morning on November 11, 1918 brought an end to official hostilities of World War 1 as of 11am (Paris time) that day. Since then each year on the eleventh-hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month a short time of silent remembrance is observed in honour of those who sacrificed their lives. Whilst the celebration of military servicemen and women and the multitude of auxiliary support services is generally observed on ANZAC Day in Australia, Remembrance Day is still an occasion to reflect on the loss of life, expense of war and the cost of freedoms that we daily take for granted.
In our own Church we have individuals and families that made incredible sacrifices, some with added mortal risks, to leave their ancestral homes, culture and loved ones to find a sanctuary of political, religious, moral and personal freedom in Australia. That freedom, by and large, was bought with the blood of men and women who never lived to see the magnificent opulence that we revel in, even now. The mere fact that you can read this blog, or dismiss it entirely without fear of reprisal, persecution, arrest, or torture is a bold evidence of our freedom and a product of the sacrifice of our military.
Their sacrifice, though, only acquired a temporal stay and a partial freedom. True freedom, from our inadequacy, insecurity, fear and sin was purchased once and for all by Jesus on the cross. His defeat of the final enemy, death, provides us with certainty of life with God as our Father now and in eternity. The choice to live that life and how to spend our time is ours. John Piper, a Baptist Pastor in the USA, suggests that we pursue godly pleasure with all our energy as a means to make the best use of our time. He contends, “God is most glorified in me, when I am most satisfied in him“, therefore to pursue a thankful, enjoyment of life as a gift from God is one of the greatest ways to serve and honour our heavenly Father. What will most glorify God in your life today?