- Philippians 4:13 (NKJV) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
The Battle of Ypres has become linked forever with World War One and sums up the futility of the entire war. Over 1,700,000 soldiers on both sides were killed or wounded and an uncounted number of civilians. Historian John Keegan, referring to Great Britain’s role in the struggle, states that this epic struggle: “marked the end of an age of vital optimism in British life that has never been recovered.”
History bears Keegan out. There was a time that the sun never set on the mighty British Empire—today Great Britain is but a minor player among the nations of the world…truly they suffered an end of vital optimism that has never been recovered.
This can happen to individuals as well. I’ve witnessed it myself—people who suffered such tragic setback(s) that they never recovered. But, this does NOT have to happen.
I had fully intended to go in a different direction for today’s ONE THING but kept being drawn back to this central thought and it is this: No matter how tragic, difficult, or odious your life may be—you do not have to lose your vital optimism. Dear friend, there is always hope. That hope does not depend upon your strength or resources or the abilities of others, it rest upon the eternal mercy and power of a loving God (revealed to us in Jesus Christ).
Remember these biblical principles:
- Because God is sovereign, nothing happens by accident or without His ultimate permission. Thus your life can never be futile and meaningless.
- Furthermore, because God is love, everything that happens can work together for you good—nothing, absolutely nothing has to ultimately defeat and destroy you.
- Finally, the one essential step is putting your faith in Jesus Christ—then you can be absolutely sure that when the final tally is recorded, you win!
When the angel appeared to the shepherds on the day Jesus was born with the glad tidings that a savior had been born (Luke 2:11), he was referring to the full human experience. As important as salvation for the soul is, don’t limit Jesus to that—He is your complete savior. There is nothing or no one that can separate you from his love and influence.
As you face the challenges and opportunities of a New Year keep your faith and focus on Jesus Christ and be assured the vital optimism you need will be there.
As the old Easter chorus declares: “Because He lives [you] can face tomorrow…”