I’m thinking this morning, this cold and snowy Remembrance Day morning, of the family of a thirty-four-year-old mom. We were at her memorial service yesterday, Lyndon and Carter and I. Her son is eleven, the same age as Carter and a friend of his. And Lyndon works with her dad.

We’ve been thinking of this family so much these past weeks. Carter has prayed for them and continues to pray for them at every opportunity. And he always says the same thing.

Please be with this family. Help them to soldier on.

This is the theme of Remembrance Day for me, this year.

Sometimes life is sweet and carefree.

Sometimes life is sweet and difficult.

And sometimes its just plain hard, and the best you can do is soldier on.

At his mom’s memorial, Carter’s little friend gave a small speech. He shared the ordinary of his mom – that she was always late, that she loved to dress nice and look nice. And then he, with childish eloquence, stated,

“I didn’t think it would be over by the time I was eleven. I didn’t expect that. You don’t want to be me, that’s for sure.”

These are the words haunting me this morning, as I get ready for a Sunday of Remembrance. As we prepare to participate in the ceremony in town with the laying of the wreaths and the quoting of the poems and the bugle call at 11:11, and as we spend time later at church remembering the one who died for us all, and as we spend the afternoon at a farewell for special friends who are moving away.

These words remind me that life is uncertain and often full of loss and pain. That sometimes, it doesn’t seem to make much sense.

Today, these words remind me that we must all, in our own ways, soldier on.