In 1777, at a very dark moment amid a string of defeats in the first quest for Liberty -- and just before the fall of Philadelphia and the brutal Winter at Valley Forge, Washington wrote one of his generals: "We should never despair, our Situation before has been unpromising and has changed for the better, so I trust, it will again. If new difficulties arise, we must only put forth new Exertions and proportion our Efforts to the exigency of the times."
Knowing that I love patriotic quotes, a friend sent the above to me. Washington's words of counsel and encouragement apply to all of us and whatever challenges we may face. Let's examine them.
"We should never despair." I have despaired many times in my life. The despair never did anything to change my situation. The one thing it did do, though, was to bring me to my knees, both figuratively and literally, as I poured out my heart to Christ, begging for His healing powers and comfort.
" ... our Situation before has been unpromising and has changed for the better, so I trust, it will again." However dire our circumstances, however depressed our hearts and spirits may be, we will find solace and relief. Perhaps not immediately. But there will be respite from our pain because the Lord loves us.
"If new difficulties arise, we must only put forth new Exertions and proportion our Efforts to the exigency of the times." Washington's eloquent words give us a sometimes much needed kick-in-the-pants to keep trying, to keep going even when all else appears to be against us.
This I know for sure: George Washington faced insurmmountable odds, overwhelming opposition, not just from the enemy but also from within his own ranks, yet he held fast--to the Lord, to his faith, to the truth. We must do the same.