Special Forces Association
Chapter XXIII - 23

An EPITAPH is what those left behind say about you, generally abbreviated on your tombstone.

Often, when commentators describe the life of a president while he’s in office, they’ll speak of “his legacy”, i.e. how he’ll be remembered after he’s gone – his epitaph. You don’t have to be a President to wonder how you’ll be remembered. I think that as we grow older the thought comes up in those quiet sober moments when we look back on our life and our years of service. It’s like reviewing our DD 214 – that story of our life that today anyone can read.

Our epitaph will be determined by the choices we’ve made (good and bad), our actions, and our words. If you were to sit down today and sum up those choices, actions, and words into a resume to send into God before your final PCS how do you think He would respond to it? Would He wad it up and shoot a three pointer into the circular file with the words “who is this guy? I don’t know him”. Or, would His response be, “Well done thou good and faithful servant”? These latter words were not the words King Jehoram of Judah heard after living a life in opposition to God and leading his people deep into the evils of idolatry. When he died it is written in II Chron 21:20, “He passed away TO NO ONE’S REGRET. They buried him in the city of David, but not in the tombs of the kings.” A sorry epitaph “TO NO ONE’S REGRET” that we’d all like to avoid.

Our spiritual Field Manual (FM), the Bible, tells that ultimately God writes our final epitaph. Our life is recorded in God’s Book of Life and the most important chapter will be the one that reveals whether or not we have placed our trust in Jesus Christ, God’s Son. God doesn’t care how many badges we’ve earned, how many combat tours we’ve endured, how many jumps we’ve made, or how many old ladies we’ve helped across the street. All these are good but what really matters with God, bottom line, is that we have put our trust in His Son, Jesus Christ, because if we have, hopefully, our life will reflect that trust and our epitaph will read, “He is one of Mine”. That’s all that needs to be said and your passing will not be without regret.

Chaplain Col. Vahan Sipantzi
26972 Lower Pleasant Ridge Rd.
Wilder, ID  83676
(208) 482-7495