The Battle Is Won
Today is the 75th Anniversary of D-Day… and it has me thinking about battles … about generals … about soldiers … about victories … about the blood shed and the price paid.
You don’t know what D-Day is?
Let me become your 11th grade American History teacher for just a moment …
Now listen to me… don’t you dare stare off into space … throw spit-balls … or think about what you are having for lunch … as normal 16-year-olds do …
As we begin this grand lesson … listen well because D-Day is about you…
On June 6, 1944, men from all over the world came to fight in Normandy to defeat Nazism and to re-establish freedom.
Normandy will bear the scars of this moment in history forever.
Soldiers came from America, Britain, Canada, Belgium, Denmark, Holland, Norway, Poland and Australia for one bloody, glorious moment on history’s timeline.
This was the day that turned the tide in favor of freedom. This one truth cannot be overstated.
D-Day was a critical, momentous and history-shaking turning point in the eventual outcome of World War II.
It had actually been scheduled for June 5, 1944, but bad weather caused it to be delayed for 24 hours.
When improved weather conditions were predicted for the morning of June 6, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, gave the go-ahead with these words:
“You are about to embark upon the Great Crusade, toward which we have striven these many months. The eyes of the world are upon you.”
(Oh! My heart just melts within me as I read those words spoken by the American general who would become the 34th President of the United States of America.)
The first waves of American fighters were cut down in droves by German machine gun fire as they scrambled across the mine-riddled beach.
However, by the day’s end, approximately 156,000 Allied troops had successfully stormed Normandy’s beaches.
The Germans suffered from confusion in their ranks and from the absence of their celebrated commander, Rommel, who was away on leave.
Less than a week later, by June 11, 1944, the beaches were fully secured and the Allied forces were on their way to continue their march across France.
D-day matters. It matters very much.
And we dare not forget.
We dare not forget that every boy who gave his life on the beach that week was a mother’s son … a sweetheart’s first love … a young bride’s groom … and a child’s daddy.
We must not forget.
They really were the greatest generation, weren’t they?
What does D-Day have to do with you? And with me?
D-Day was about freedom … about paying a great price … about giving oneself so that others could live … about putting aside preference and ease for a call and a purpose greater than oneself.
D-Day was about leadership … it was about overcoming great odds … it was about obeying commands and not shirking in the face of grave danger.
Now … let’s talk about you and the battle that you may be in today …
In every victory – there has been a hard fought battle that has taken place prior to the victory.
Blood is shed in pursuit of victory … lives are given in determination to win.
It seems to me – the harder the battle … the more glorious the victory.
Are you in a battle today? I am.
The battle that I am in is all-consuming … heartbreaking … and depleting.
But before you worry about me – let me be quick to tell you that I have been in horrific battles before and I know what to do.
The Lord has assured me that the battle is not mine – but that it is His battle.
As I ponder the truth that this battle is not mine but His … I am reminded that He wins every battle that He fights.
He has never lost a battle yet.
And so I leave the battle to Him … in His victorious, nail-scarred, proficient hands.
We do indeed have an enemy … but there is gargantuan confusion in the ranks of our enemy.
Our enemy’s leader has been soundly defeated and is MIA.
I think about the blood that is shed in every battle … and the great news is this, my friend:
The blood has already been shed on your behalf.
There will be no blood required on your part because the blood that was left upon the beaches of planet earth was enough to win the victory.
It was more than enough.
In every battle there is a leader … a general whose word is truth and whose commands are followed explicitly.
You have a commander who has cast the vision for you to carry on in the face of great odds …
This is what Jesus said as He sent His disciples into the battle of their lives:
“All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:18-20
Perhaps we could paraphrase it to sound something like this:
“You are about to embark upon the Great Commission, toward which we have striven these many centuries. The eyes of the world are upon you.”
My friend, let’s be the greatest generation in the course of history of Christendom. Let’s do what others were unwilling to do.
Let’s give our all to the cause of Christ and His Kingdom.
And, may we always trust the Words of our honorable General who always leads us in triumph in Christ Jesus!
Thanks for listening to my heart this week. As you know by now, my heart is truly not a perfect heart but it is a heart that is filled to overflowing with gratitude for the life I have been given and for the people who walk with me. And, it continues to be a heart that is relentlessly chasing after God and all that He is!