Part of our citizenship is doing our best to understand the tribulations our predecessors confronted in building this nation.”
“I have been driven many times upon my knees by the overwhelming conviction that I had nowhere else to go. My own wisdom, and that of all about me, seemed insufficient. One stormy night I tossed on my bed, unable to sleep as I thought of the terrible sufferings of our soldiers and sailors. I spent an hour in agonizing prayer.”
I don’t want to spend too much time writing negatively, but I do want to mention a few things that have happened in the past few years concerning our military policies and God.
–March 2015, A decorated Navy SEAL chaplain was relieved of duty for providing counseling that contained religious views on things such as faith, marriage, and sexuality.
–March 2014, Maxwell Air Force Base bans Gideons from handing out Bibles to willing recruits, a practice that had bee occurring for years.
–July 2013, An Air Force chaplain who posted an article on the importance of faith and the origin of the phrase “There are no atheists in foxholes” was officially ordered to remove his post because some were offended by the use of that famous World War II phrase.
–June 2013, The Obama administration “strong objects” to a Defense Authorization to protect the constitutionally-guaranteed religious rights of soldiers and chaplains, claiming that it would have an “adverse effect on good order, discipline, morale, and mission accomplishment.”
There are several other directives that have happened in the recent years. Goodness, the people who protect our country cannot invoke the name of the One who they seek for protection.
Soldiers throughout our history have been eager for spiritual support from chaplains, services, and Bibles. It was recorded that soldiers during the Civil War wore out their Bibles and needed new ones. There was hunger for the promises of the Lord. It is recorded that around 300,000 soldiers accepted Christ during the Civil War. Those are the ones recorded – how many more on the battlefield with shot and shells around them made a confession of faith?
I found the following from a book by Terry Tuley (Stories of Faith and Courage from the Civil War). It is from the diary of 1st Lieutenant Albert Goodloe.
“While here at Morton we received a good supply of Bibles, Testaments, hymn books, and tracts, which had heretofore been ordered. The need of these we had felt very keenly for some time in carrying forward our religious undertakings…they came to a multitude of new converts to the religion of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to many more who were earnest inquirers after the truth…. To be sure there were never many of us who were never without our pocket Bibles, but there were many others who had none, having lost theirs or worn them out…and especially did we have an urgent need for a good supply of hymn books. What a mighty chorus of voices there was raised in songs of praises to our God by the soldiers when the hymn books were given out in the congregation.”
“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.”
–Matthew 5:6 (NIV)