I have a couple grandsons- Age 4 and 6. They are bigger, stronger, smarter and busier than your “average” 4 and 6 year old. Right now, they are all about superheroes and Ninjas, Star Wars and fighter jets. They called me last month with a special request: “Grandma- can you make a Ninja costume- like a real one that’s black and has ties and hand guards?” How can I say “no?”
Like a good grandmother, I hopped on-line and scoured Pinterest and sewing pattern website to find an “authentic” Ninja uniform. None of these Pajama-like printed Halloween knock-offs for my little warriors. I wanted the real thing. Well- I found a great pattern. Here is a link if you are interested: Authentic Ninja Pattern. Just be warned- it is in Japanese…Have fun with that!
I love that my boys are strong. I love that they feel protective of their family and want to be strong and powerful. I love that they want to “beat the bad guys.” I want nothing more than to nurture these qualities that will mature and grow into deep compassion for the weak, a clear sense of good and evil and the inner resolve to stand up and fight, as a man and a warrior, for what is right.
A warrior is not a bully. He does not cultivate strength in his body to exert force over those weaker than him. A warrior has a special role in the protection and defense of the good. It is born of deep love for family, for humanity, and for principles of peace. It comes from a place of pleasure in his strength and the knowledge that his strength and resolve may be called upon to defeat evil in it’s most violent expression.
A warrior knows that when he is called to battle, it is a fight to the death. A warrior knows that he may not return from the fight, and yet, he goes. A warrior is resolved to use all his strength and hold nothing back. If the enemy prevails for a time, a warrior sells his body at the highest cost to the enemy, knowing his brothers in battle will carry on until evil is defeated and those he loves are safe.
Today is Memorial Day. I stand in honor of the fallen with a peculiar mix of pride and anguish knowing that the heart of a warrior, indeed, of many warriors, have ceased to beat. As I pause for a moment to consider the weight of this truth, I hope you will join me in reflection on what it means to be a warrior- to love peace so much that you would fight to the death to preserve it.
John 15:12-13 This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.