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What is a Veteran?

What comes to mind when you hear the word “Veteran”? Most of us would think of those who have served in the military. According to a US Department of Veterans Affairs website, in November of 1919 President Wilson proclaimed November 11th as the first commemoration of Armistice Day. The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m. On June 1, 1954, President Eisenhower signed HR 7786 which changed Armistice Day to Veterans Day, and November 11th was designated as a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

So, this month we will celebrate Veterans Day and honor those who have served in military of the United States of America. 

There is another definition of a “Veteran” and it is this: a person who has had long experience in a particular field; an old hand; past master; vet; old-timer; old warhorse. Someone who has served a long time, is seasoned, old, hardened, expert, well trained, practiced, experienced, senior, or a diplomat because of their time spent in a particular field.

I have been a Christian 29 years, but I do not consider myself a “Veteran” of Christianity. Why is that? Even though I have been reading the Bible throughout these years, I find I am continually learning more about God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and myself. I am learning complicated, yet simple things. I am seeing things again, yet new for the first time. I am hearing from God, feeling the joy of Jesus Christ, yet enjoying a peace that only the Holy Spirit can give.

Although I have read it many times and heard sermons about it before, it has been impressed on me to pray Philippians 4:6 over the past several days. “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God.” NASB

Be anxious for nothing! Pray about everything! Two statements I have heard from Peter Helgerson several times, but God has been speaking to me again and asking me to put it into action. Then I am reminded of Psalms 46:10a “Be still, and know that I am God;” NKJV

Am I a veteran? Yes and No. Yes, I served in the Army and I am a Vietnam era Veteran. No, I cannot call myself a veteran of the Christian faith. But I will say, God is still working on me. Isaiah 64:8, “But now, O Lord, You are our Father, We are the clay, and You our potter; And all of us are the work of Your hand.” NASB

You see, the Potter (God) is still working on this clay (me).

GR (Jerry) Niver

CMA Ohio State Coordinator

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