by M. Kenneth Lyon

This content is part of a series.

Living a Satisfied Life (6 of 7)
Series: Home Improvement
M. Kenneth Lyon
Philippians 4:15-20
May 30, 1999

Some of you have seen the movie. I invite all of you to engage it with me. The opening scene is the American flag waving in the breeze. And then that scene dissolves as the image of an older man appears, early 70's. He is walking with a deliberate, if somewhat unsteady pace. About 10 paces behind him is a small group of people, obviously his family--his wife, a son, daughter-in- law, their 3 daughters, and youngest child, a boy. His pace quickens as he turns the corner, and then he stops. There before him stretched out what seems like toward the entire horizon are rows upon rows of white crosses planted in the well-manicured green grass. It's just off the beach of Normandy, a military cemetery. He regains his composure long enough to begin walking. He is looking for something in particular. Though all of the crosses mean something to him, there is one he must find; and when he finds it, he falls to his knees, overcome with emotion, remembering, remembering, remembering. The camera begins to focus on his eyes.

Right before your eyes, he is transformed. He is taken back in history, and his eyes become those of Capt. John Miller, who is the commander of a small platoon that is going to land there on the beaches of Normandy. It is an intense fight. There are many lives lost. There are soldiers who will never be the same because they have had limbs blown away. And yet after that invasion force is complete, Capt. John Miller with his small group, now decimated by the landing at Normandy is given a new assignment. It seems that there is a young soldier by the name of Pvt. Ryan somewhere on the interior. He has had 2 brothers in the war. They have both been killed. It was the policy of the military at that time when there was only one surviving son still serving in the military, that son would be sent home so a family would not have to face the possibi ...

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