The Star Democrat

From the pastor’s desk: The most famous Christmas truce

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In France, World War I had become a trench war with no one daring to go between the deathly areas called “no-man’s land.” These two trenches had resulted in many deaths and neither side could gain an advantage on their enemy. On the surface, it looked like a very lonely, cold and depressing first Christmas but then something very unique happened that Christmas morning.

History states it started when the German troops lit candles on Christmas trees on their parapets so the British sentries a few hundred yards away could see them. On the other side, British troops started lighting bonfires and letting off rockets. The story goes that one German soldier called over to the British lines asking if they could share a cup of coffee while the British soldier responded yes if they had some tobacco he could smoke his pipe with.These two soldiers met on the battlefiel­d and exchanged their gifts.Then something incredible happened!

Both armies had received lots of comforts from home and felt generous and well-disposed toward their enemies and came out of the trenches, meeting in the center of the no man’s land and began sharing their gifts with each other. One soldier wrote, “Just while you were eating your turkey, I was out talking and shaking hands with the very men I had been trying to kill a few hours before. It was astounding!” The soldiers in gray and khaki sang carols to each other, exchanges gifts of tobacco, jam, sausage, chocolate, and liquor, traded names and addresses and played soccer between the shell holes and barbed wire. They even paid mutual trench visits! All along the lines that Christmas Day soldiers found their enemies very much like them and began asking why they should be trying to kill each other.

The generals were shocked. High Command diaries and statements express anxiety that if that sort of thing spread, it could sap the troops will to fight. At the close of Christmas day, the two armies returned to their trenches knowing tomorrow they would resume the war, but inside The Holy Spirit changed their hearts forever.

The day is called, “The Most Famous Truce in Military History.”

Personal Thought: What a shame we could with God’s help never had another war or hate again. Maybe its time to let God guide our leaders and not rely on our own fears/prejudices

DR. LARRY WILLIAMSON

Victorious Tabernacle Christian Outreach Center,

Easton

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