the music tells the story – bring him home…

As I sit here on Memorial Day, a day in this country set aside to honor and remember our fallen brothers and sisters who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our country, I can’t help but recall this song, “Bring Him Home.”  My musical journey with my father included this song from the famed broadway musical, “Les Miserables.”  My dad loved the tenderness of this song, the sacrificial love expressed through this song, and of course, Colm Wilkinson’s amazing performance of it.

The framework of the story of Les Miserables’ spans many years but at this point of the story when this particular song is performed, a battle has just taken place.  The June Rebellion of 1832 in Paris.  Many have died and one citizen soldier in particular, Marius, has been critically injured.  This father, Jean Valjean, pleads with God to save Marius because it is the man whom his daughter loves.  Jean Valjean sings, “If I die, let me die… let him live.”  The ultimate sacrifice, to lay down your life for another.  While this story is set in 19th century France, the emotions and feelings of this song I think capture the hearts and thoughts of any loved one who has a family member stationed and fighting for what we believe in.  And I certainly feel that any soldier, armed with honor and integrity, lives this song each and every day.  They stand ready and willing to answer the call, to fight for our freedoms and safety and ultimately to pay the highest price with their own lives for the lives of others.

My father was a patriotic man.  He served in our military during the Vietnam War era and he was a strong believer in this country, for all that we stand for.  Democracy.  Life.  Liberty.  Pursuit of happiness.  He believed in all the great things this country is and could be.  He taught me to believe in it too.  To honor our flag and our fallen.  To give reverence to our veterans.  To help our neighbors.  To respect each other.

Today though, we remember the millions of American soldiers who have gone Home, to their Heavenly Home.  “Bring Him Home,” takes on new meaning when we think about all those who, during our wars, battles and training exercises, never returned to their home here.  They never reunited with friends and family.  They were laid to rest in a cemetery or a field somewhere in this world after the chaos of war had settled.  Their hearts stopped beating, their souls transcended to another place.  But their legacy of sacrifice lives on.

We honor them today.  We remember them today.  But this shouldn’t be something we honor and remember only one day a year.  These precious men and women should weigh heavy on our own hearts and souls each and every day.  Because they died, we live.  Freely.  Comfortably.  We get to return home…


LYRICS – Courtesy, Google Play

God on high
Hear my prayer
In my need
You have always been there

He is young
He’s afraid
Let him rest
Heaven blessed.
Bring him home
Bring him home
Bring him home.

He’s like the son I might have known
If God had granted me a son.
The summers die
One by one
How soon they fly
On and on
And I am old
And will be gone.

Bring him peace
Bring him joy
He is young
He is only a boy

You can take
You can give
Let him be
Let him live
If I die, let me die
Let him live
Bring him home
Bring him home
Bring him home.

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