Today, all around the world, at 11:11am on 11/11/11, we are asked to pause and remember in silence those who have served/serve in our military so we may be safe and protected. And yet we seldom hear of what they give up on our behalf.
When we take our turns across the time zones to honor those who make incredible sacrifices, carry out the mission they committed to and who often make the ultimate sacrifice on our behalf, make it count. Stop. Really stop. Consider. Consider the courage and strength it takes to put oneself in harm’s way. Give thanks.
From the deepest part of your heart, send thoughts of thanks and gratitude to those out there still fighting on our behalf, families waiting for their safe return and the souls lost over the many years.
Too often these days, we give time and front page headlines to people who can’t spell the word commitment never mind understand what true sacrifice is about. Meanwhile, military families must find ways to raise children with a parent overseas, tighten their budgets to make ends meet or deal with a long list of challenges in the aftermath of combat. If we have time for TMZ, Kanye West, and Kim Kardashian, surely we have a minute to spare for our Veterans.
Do what you must to remember to interrupt your daily schedule…a routine you can do freely because others protect our borders and the people we love. Set an alarm. Pull over to the side of the road. Push back from your desk. Get on your feet and make the effort to take part. It is such an easy and simple gesture, yet it is meaningful and inspirational.
Imagine if you were in a bank or a grocery store and you modeled this moment for others. Can you feel the ripple effect? One after another will stop and join in. And in that moment, you will be standing in silence honoring those who serve in silence. Without complaint, without much recognition, because they said they would and because they know what it means to honor your word and serve your country. You don’t have to be on a stage with a microphone or in a corner office to lead. We lead in the every day examples we set by the actions we take.
I know where I will be today at 11:11amPST on 11/11/11…on my feet, eyes closed, hand on my heart sending my gratitude and my thanks. Please join me.