Today marks the 70th anniversary of the D-Day landing on Normandy beaches, June 6, 1944. As reported today by WorldNet Daily in an article entitled, “D-Day Chaplain Carried No Weapons, Led Men Off Landing Craft,” the story of LtCol George Russell Barber USAF (Ret) is told. He was the first man out of the boat, leading his fellow soldiers into the barrage of withering fire from the waiting enemy. However, he was not unarmed. “I had the Sword of the Spirit,” he said.
Chaplain Russell served this country in four wars, giving away Gideon’s Bibles, holding services, preaching the Gospel, and praying with dying soldiers. As he would hold the dying in his arms, he would quote to them from John 14:1 “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me.”
As I read of this man’s courage and compassion, I could not help but think how our nation has forgotten the terrible price paid by so many in “blood, sweat, and tears,” that we might remain free. I considered the young men and women returning from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—many wounded, maimed, and shattered in soul. And I think of the families who today cry at the absence of a son or daughter, a husband or wife, a father or mother.
Yet, to me the greatest betrayal of our fighting forces is the failure of the Church of Jesus Christ, and of His sons and daughters, to be willing to truly enter into the ongoing spiritual war against the Evil One and his forces. We as a people have become fat, lazy, and timid. This slovenly mentality has permeated our churches—especially our pulpits. Pastors should be imitating the courage of men like Chaplain Russell, instead of feathering their own nests and assuring their own comfort.
How we need a new generation of young Christian men and women who will hear the ancient trumpet call to battle, cast aside the pursuits of self, and train with sacrificial devotion for a spiritual D-Day— a final assault on the strongholds of the spiritual enemy before the soon ending of this present Church Age!
How we need grandparents and parents who will take their places among the ranks of diligent prayer warriors, interceding for this lost generation, praying for spiritual awakening across this land—our only hope in these dark and perilous hours. How we need pastors who will be true shepherds of souls, feeding the sheep from the only source of spiritual nourishment—the inspired and inerrant Word of God!
My prayer on this historic day, filled with so much sacrificial love for our nation, is that we may find “a few good men and women” who will be inflamed by the Spirit of God to become living torches of liberty in what is no longer “the land of the free and the home of the brave.”
May we once again, if only few in number, reclaim our lost heritage and find the courage displayed by our founders! We will find these precious qualities in no other place than where they found them. We must return to the God of the Bible, the Christ who died for us, and His Word, which “lives and abides forever.” If we fail to do this, our only alternative is to live and die in tyranny, and to consign our children and grandchildren to the violence and bloodshed of a godless and evil generation.
God is calling for volunteers. Who will be first off the boat?
In the service of the King,
Gene and Nan