Remembering the faith of previous generations in God, the Christian roots of our nation, and God’s providential care of it.
Alvin York (1887-1964) lived in Pall Mall Tennessee. His father died when he was 24. After his father died his life “sorter went to pieces for a few years”. During this time York was drinking, gambling, and fighting, but his mother was praying for him to come to know the Good Shepherd. Four years later he surrendered his life to Christ. Two years after, he was drafted for World War 1; although he applied for a religious exemption, he ended up realizing that fighting was necessary. One of the verses that helped York come to this understanding was “Blessed are the peacemakers
” Matthew 5:9a. He was fighting in the war to bring peace.
Excerpts from Sergeant York's war diary:
June 27, 1918
Montsec Sector, France.“I did a heap of thinking and praying at this time. And monr’n ever I jes knowed I was going to get back all right. I believed in God and in His promises And I knowed as I did that He would believe in me and watch over me.
York’s account of how he made it thru the Argonne Forest battle alive:“…I don’t care how good a shot man is, hit ain’t in the nature of things for one man with an army rifle and a pistol to whip thirty-five machine guns that can each fire over six hundred shots a minute from a p’int blank range of between twenty and thirty yards…I’m a-telling you the hand of God must have been in that fight. It surly must have been Divine Power that brought me out….Men were killed on both sides of me and all around me and I was the biggest and most exposed of them all… and I never receiving a scratch, and bringing in one hundred and thirty two prisoners…without the help of God I jes couldn’t have done it.”
York’s humility and faith in God through great adversity is a great example to us all.
“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life” 1 Timothy 6:12a
“Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, (2) looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1a-2