What We Can Learn from Veterans

Sharing the inspiring words of Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis for Veterans Day

by
Posted in , Nov 5, 2015

What we can learn from our veterans, sharing the words of retired Marine Corps Gen. James Mattis.

In honor of Veterans Day on November 11, I'm searching for the words to pay my respect to past and present military veterans. So I turned to a speech from James Mattis, a retired four-star U.S. Marine Corps general.

Earlier this year, Gen. Mattis honored Iraq and Afghanistan veterans at the Marines’ Memorial Club in San Francisco. In his remarks, “The Meaning of Their Service,” he articulates the sacrifices of those who serve in the military and what is gained as a result of duty, including what veterans can offer their communities and country.

Click here to learn more about Veterans Awareness Month and what you can do to help. 

Here are some key remarks from that speech:

  • “No granite monuments, regardless of how grandly built, can take place of your raw example of courage, when in your youth you answered your country’s call. You built your own monument with a soldier’s faith, embracing an unlimited liability clause and showing America’s younger generation at its best when times were at their worst.”
     
  • “You, my fine veterans, are privileged that you will never face a judgment of having failed to live fully. For you young patriots were more concerned in living life fully than in your own longevity, freely facing daunting odds and the random nature of death and wounds on the battlefield.”
     
  • “We veterans did our patriotic duty, nothing more, certainly nothing less, and we need to 'come home' like veterans of all America’s wars. Come home stronger and more compassionate, not characterized as damaged or with disorders or with syndromes or other disease labels.”
     
  • “You should recognize that our country needs your vigor and wisdom. It was gained at great cost to our comrades and to our Gold Star families, who need to see their sons’ spirits live on in your enthusiasm for life.”

Though one day a year is not enough to show our gratitude for all that they have done, may we honor and say thanks to all veterans this Veteran’s Day. Remember to always keep them in your prayers for we are indebted to them for their commitment and loyalty to our country. They deserve our affirmation and respect.

Who do you honor on Veterans Day? Please share with us.

Lord, thank you for the service and the on-going contributions of our veterans. Bless them with your peace, wisdom and vigor.

View Comments