John McCrae was a doctor in the Canadian Expeditionary Forces during WWI. He was a soldier and a physician. During the Second Battle of Ypres, he was particularly overcome as his dearest friend lost his life in a battle that had raged for 17 days straight. Upon the death of his friend, he walked out of the surgery tent and penned what became the most famous wartime piece of poetry in history.
In Flander’s Fields
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
We chose the name McCrae since baby Vaughn was named in the honor and memory of a true American hero– Aaron Vaughn. I felt that the sentiments of this poem, written 100 years ago, echoed exactly what is in my heart:
Simply that the price of freedom is too high to not live our lives fully in attaining the destiny God has marked out for each of us (Eph. 2:10) in our personal, family, and professional lives. A torch has been thrown to us, and we must not break faith with those who have given their last measure so that we may live freely from tyranny and oppression. Their widows and children continue to live out that loss daily and for them we must fight on and press in harder for our personal victories that will build a stronger foundation for this nation– the last best hope on earth. John McCrae wrote these words that have inspired me, and now I pray baby Vaughn McCrae will live out a life and a calling that will continue to lead and inspire others to a will of service and sacrifice.
For an incredible book on this poem which includes beautiful and inspiring paintings, historical facts and photos, as well as the poetry, purchase my all-time favorite children’s book here.
Thank you, once again, for celebrating the new life God has gifted us. May each of you be blessed in your parenting journey and never cease from seeking Jesus.