Follow the Leader to Victory

Jesus healed many people for the three years he was on this earth, but there were many more he did not heal. Were those select individuals in that select spot on the earth in that select time period the only ones to experience Jesus? No. Let us explain using the image of D-Day. Operation Overlord on June 6, 1944 was arguably the most significant event of WWII. But the battle did not end the war. Hitler would not surrender until May 7, 1945. The Allies still had to break out of Normandy, retake Paris, and fight to Berlin. Operation Market Garden would be launched, the Battle of the Bulge fought, the perilous slog through the Hurtgen Forest commenced, and this was only the war in Europe.

Jesus' three years of ministry was like D-Day. He commenced the real fighting and gained a toehold on the cliffs of war when he went about Galilee healing and exorcising. The rest of the war would be fought by his apostles, and their successors. That is our work in the church. Jesus inaugurated the battle for us and we continue it in his name. Everyone—in all lands and in all times—is privileged, therefore, to experience Jesus.

An even bolder image would be that of General Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., the son of the great president and rough-riding colonel. TR Jr. was 56 years old when he stormed Utah Beach: “the single greatest act of courage,” according to General Omar Bradley. Roosevelt was the only general to land in the first wave of troops, and he was armed with only a walking stick and pistol. Amazingly, Roosevelt survived D-Day and would die a month later of a heart attack in his sleep. The general was a great inspiration to his men, giving them motivation to fight on to eventual victory. Christ does the same for us.

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