10th November 2019

Walking With Ghosts

“And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment.”
Hebrews 9:27 (NKJV)

Remembrance Sunday will mean more to me this year. On a recent visit to Normandy in France, my wife and I were able to visit two of the Invasion beaches, two of the D Day Museums, and two of the military cemeteries. The scale of the Invasion was awesome with 180,000 troops landing in 24 hours. Today the beaches are clear sand. But then they were fearful obstacle courses with barbed wire, mines and concrete triangular objects designed to obstruct men and vehicles. All covered by withering fire from a series of well-built concrete bunkers and gun positions. The courage of those young men in coming ashore from landing craft, into what must have seemed like hell on earth, bought the freedom and peace we have enjoyed for so many years. But there was a price to be paid as the military cemeteries attest. Walking among the graves and seeing headstone after headstone saying age 18, age 19, age 20, age 21 brings home the sacrifice those young people made. Of course older people died too, but the number of young people who gave their lives is a sobering reminder of the cost. It is easy to say what a waste of talent, ability and life hardly begun.

As a Christian, looking at those graves and the ages of those brave young men, I could only think of what the Bible says—that death is not the end and that each of these men will be resurrected to a new life. Imagine dying in all that chaos with bullets and shells exploding all round you. Being resurrected to a peaceful world, while your immediate mindset is of that battle, must be very confusing. Where am I, what is happening, am I alive, am I safe? What a privilege it will be to meet these men, to thank them for their bravery and sacrifice, to share with them a new way of life based on love, guaranteed by God.

When people ask why we choose Christianity, the answer is: it is the only way that makes sense of this kind of sacrifice. All those who have died in war through the centuries will live again. Only a God of supreme power can guarantee that. Read Ezekiel 37:1-14 and Revelation 20:10-12. Whether you choose to believe or not, only God can make and fulfill promises of a resurrection to life, however and whenever we die. Do you have that kind of hope in your life?

Prayer
Gracious Father, only faith and belief in You makes any sense of the deaths of so many people, young and old, in war. We pray for the day when humanity will only know the way to peace. In Jesus name we pray.
Amen

Study by Keith Hartrick
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About the Author:
Keith Hartrick is an Elder in Grace Communion Church – Leeds.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion – Leeds
Garden Village Welfare Association Community Centre
Pendas Way
LEEDS
LS15 8LE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2PM

Local Congregational Contact:
Malcolm Arnold
Phone: 01484-312347
Email: leeds@gracecom.church

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