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Viewpoint from Pat Stringer 06/11/2020

Dove rightPat Stringer
Licensed Lay Minister
Parish of Great Yarmouth

 
 
This year on Remembrance Sunday many services may be held in different ways due to the restrictions of covid-19, but because we cannot forget, we should not forget all those who sacrificed their lives in wartime.  If we don’t remember those whose lives have been sacrificed so that we can live, we will be very ungrateful
 
There’s a strange story in the Old Testament of a general called Gideon who was going into battle with 32,000 men.  God told Gideon first of all to let those who were afraid go home, two-thirds of the army left.  The remaining 10,000 men were told to drink from the nearby water source.  Some knelt and put their faces in the water, but 300 scooped it up in their hands.  On this purely arbitrary basis, God told Gideon to reduce his forces and take a mere 300 into battle
 
dove leftThey hid their torches inside earthenware jars and then suddenly revealed their presence by breaking the jars and blowing trumpets.  The enemy thought a huge army was attacking them and ran away in a panic.  The purpose of reducing the army was to teach Gideon humility.  If he’d beaten the enemy with a large army, it would have gone to his head; he’d have imagined he could cope on his own.  Because he succeeded with a handful of troops, he realised that nobody can win without God’s help
 
We should always remember when a war is won that we couldn’t have done it on our own, but that we were successful because God helped us.  That doesn’t mean that God takes sides, God is as saddened by the death of one of the enemy as he is by that of one of our own troops; but we’ll never succeed if we forget to call on God
 
With God on our side we pray for peace on Remembrance Sunday, as we remember the fallen, that we may be led to further the spreading of the gospel throughout the world, for this will bring in the ‘End of Time’ which is the ‘End of War’.  That is the best of all tributes we can make to those who have gone on ahead

also published in the Great Yarmouth Mercury

 


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