Echoes From the Campfire

For he was a man to stay by his friends for good or bad to the very end of time.”
              –Ernest Haycox  (Saddle and Ride)

    “And Jonathan made David reaffirm his vow of friendship again, for Jonathan loved David as he loved himself.”
              –1 Samuel 20:17 (NLT)
              Soldiers, Sailors and Airmen of the Allied Expeditionary Force!
       “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. The hopes and prayers of liberty-loving people everywhere march with you…
        Your task will not be an easy one. Your enemy is well trained, well equipped and battle hardened. He will fight savagely…
        I have full confidence in your courage and devotion to duty and skill in battle. We will accept nothing less than full Victory!
        Good luck! And let us beseech the blessing of Almighty God upon this great and noble undertaking.”
                        –General Dwight D. Eisenhower

Most of us were not around on that eventful day of June 6, 1944–D-Day.  It was a day of triumph and tragedy.  It was a day of heroic endeavor and a day of horror.
    Imagine those boys, riding in the landing craft, ready to hit the beaches of Normandy.  They knew that as soon as the doors of the landing craft went down they would face a hailstorm of bullets.  These were men, mostly young men, who has aspirations, dreams, the hope of a career.  They were men who had wives at home, a family; some had only their sweethearts.  What were their thoughts as they approached the beach?  Today, when we think of a beach we think of fun in the sand, hilarity and laughter.  This beach was a beach of death, of terror and fear.
    Take time to ponder the words of their commander as they went out to face the enemy.  Look at them carefully.  D-Day spelled the end of the might Third Reich.  Oh, it would take another year for them to finally crumble, many more battles would have to be fought, many more lives would be lost.  But it was this battle that brought about the end.  The war would continue, but victory was inevitable.
    I mentioned last week about losing a cousin at Normandy.  Of course, I never knew him, but his name was Ralph Fanson.  Shauna, our family historian, sought out his picture and found his gravesite at Normandy.  There would be 2500 who would die on that day with another 10,000 casualties.  And back at home today, 2018, we still have protestors that say life doesn’t treat them right.  How dare they say that when there was such a tremendous sacrifice.
    Our lives are similar.  The war was won at Calvary with the victory of Jesus over the grave and sin.  Yet, we still have our day-to-day battles.  There is suffering and terror that takes place, but rest assured the victory is secured.  You must continue to do your duty with full devotion until that time when the Lord says, “Well done, good and faithful; you were faithful over a few things, I will make you ruler over many things. Enter into the joy of your Lord.” (Matthew 25:21, NKJV)