I wrote this poem in 2003. So many U.S. Soldiers, both men and women, were leaving for Iraq, to fight in a war while the rest of us lived our lives in comfort and peace. My friend’s son was one of the soldiers who fought in Iraq. I presented her with a copy of this poem to encourage her and give her hope. I prayed with her, and together we asked God to bring her son safely back home. God heard our prayers, and every Memorial Day is a sweet reminder of God’s great mercy. But many soldiers were not as fortunate. Many died, and many came back with severe physical injuries, and emotional injuries too. We don’t always understand God’s plan, but the silver lining is that God is good, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28 New International Version).
That same year in 2003, I had the honor of my poem being chosen for a reading at our small town’s memorial service which took place under the gazebo in Rose Hill Park. This poem is called “Boys at War,” as a tribute to the men who have gone before us, when only boys were soldiers heading off to fight in a war. But this poem is still meant to honor ALL those who have gone to war on behalf of our country, both men and women, who have sacrificed their lives for the rest of us. This is for the soldiers who have made it home, and the soldiers who have not. It is to thank you, because we understand, that freedom is not free.
Boys at War
Say a prayer, for our boys are at war.
What in the world are they fighting for?
Just that… our world… to keep it free.
They fight for you. They fight for me.
They risk their lives to save our own.
They’re in our hearts; they’re not alone.
God bless our boys, and let them know,
America’s proud and loves them so.
Protect their heads down to their feet.
So they’ll come marching down our street
To flags and shouts of, “Welcome Home!”
Where freedom rings, so they can roam.
And for the boys who don’t return,
Our tears will fall, our hearts will yearn.
Dear Lord, we know that some will die,
And they’ll be welcomed in the sky.
Comfort loved ones filled with sorrow.
Thank you, God, for our tomorrow.
When we’ve lived past 97,
We’ll bring flags with us to Heaven,
Smiling at each soldier’s face,
We’ll rejoice, and then embrace.
At that parade with lots of noise,
We’ll all yell thanks to God’s Brave Boys!
© 2003 Angela Royse Pelleman
No matter what happens here on Earth, soldiers and their loved ones who receive Jesus, will one day be reunited in Heaven!
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away’ ” (Rev. 21:24).