Though my Fall wreath is now replaced with something more Christmasy and the stockings are hung by the chimney with care, I just lit my pumpkin spice candle once more. It may be the conclusion of Thanksgiving weekend, but I want to let it linger.
I am pondering many things tonight. So many friends are walking in difficult places. Painful places. No-choice-but-to-surrender-and-trust-God places. And this morning in church, I was reminded of this one shining truth: our God is worthy of trust.
Against a backdrop of piano and violin accompaniment, we joined together as fellow sojourners singing ‘A Mighty Fortress is our God’, one of Martin Luther’s best known hymns. What a song. What a Savior. In the face of epic circumstances, one must employ the help of an Epic God. A bulwark never failing.
Dost ask who that may be? Christ Jesus, it is He; Lord Sabaoth, His Name, from age to age the same, and He must win the battle. Lord Sabaoth means “Lord Almighty”, “Lord of Hosts”, or even “Lord of Armies” meaning both earthly armies and the Lord’s angelic armies. One can take comfort in His military prowess and the promise of sure victory.
As 2016 nears it’s end, we face battles of many kinds. Domestic and global. Internal and external. We get weary from the fight. Though weakened by injury–bandaged, wounded, and worn–we must cry out to the Lord of Armies who goes before us, victorious and strong. And though this world, with devils filled, should threaten to undo us, we will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph through us.
Of Psalm 46, the hymn’s inspiration, Luther said, “We sing this psalm to the praise of God, because God is with us and powerfully and miraculously preserves and defends His church and His word against all fanatical spirits, against the gates of hell, against the implacable hatred of the devil, and against all the assaults of the world, the flesh and sin.”
We must keep singing and if necessary increase the volume. We must remember Hebrews 10:39…we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved. And when we falter, and we will, He must win the battle.
As the scent of pumpkin spice fills the air, on behalf of so many doing battle this very night, I am thankful for a Mighty Fortress.