Good and gracious God, we pause during this time of year to ponder several things that impact our life and the life of our family, friends, and community. Our nation begins this time by reflecting on those women and men who have given their lives in sacrifice to maintain the freedom which which we have been given to safeguard. May the sacrifice of life never be dishonored by our casual belief that we are people who have only ourselves to thank for the many benefits we enjoy. Pausing to reflect on the sacrifice of many in order to assure our freedom also requires us to make useful the time we have for family and friends as the summer takes shape in our lives and our planning. Classes in schools, colleges, and universities may be temporarily halted, but our opportunity for teaching and learning never stops. We learn now of family support and personal opportunity. Now is the time for You, as our constant guide, allow us to pause for individual learning and reflection. Teach us to teach and train ourselves in the discipline of life together.Teach us to train those whom we have been given, in trust, to know about joy, thankfulness, and appreciation. As the days for family interaction increase give us the desire and the energy to make caring for our family, our community, our nation, and our world a priority for life together. And, our Lord and our God, be among us with relaxation and in laughter! During our time of increased relaxation bring to us humor and vitality for life. Rejuvenate us for our life together in community and the desire for that life to be filled with fulfillment. Amen.
Written by Colonel, Chaplain Corps US Army (Ret.) Chaplain Rich Cooper, aka “Opa”. Rich Cooper also serves as a Board Member of the Hope Packed Project