If it had not been for the Allied forces made up of American, British, and Canadian troops, and even some from other countries, I would not be able to write this blog. I would probably not have made it much past my 11th birthday. You see, our house and my father’s business in Rotterdam, The Netherlands, were bombed as the Germans over ran much of Western Europe. As a family, we had escaped to the suburbs just before everything was destroyed. Then came five years of occupation. In the last year, the situation became critical. No food, no electricity, no heat. We ate tulip bulbs and sugar beets just so we had something in our stomach. There was no freedom of movement, early evening curfew, limited transportation, and travel permits required to go anywhere. You cannot imagine the joy when, in May 1945, we were liberated. I will be forever grateful for the men who came, of whom many gave their lives, to return freedom to German-occupied Europe.
No matter how horrible war is, with all the suffering and loss of life and freedom, there has been a greater battle going on in the world, from the beginning of time. It is the battle for souls. Satan separated man from God, their creator, and is trying to keep many in darkness and bondage. What an overwhelming experience to know there is a way to be set free. God has provided, through Jesus Christ, an opportunity to be set free. Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.” He is the way out of bondage and darkness, to freedom and light.
So often, I think about the parallel. The Allied forces came to set us physically free in Europe. So, the church of Jesus Christ is here to bring the message of spiritual freedom to every man, woman, boy and girl. There are many areas in the world where the message of spiritual freedom has not yet been heard and is not available. Christ said, “You (the Christian, the church) are the light of the world.” Do we not realize that the Light that shines the Farthest shines the Brightest at home? We must mobilize more soldiers of the cross to take the Light to those in darkness.