Saturday, June 11, 2011
Holding the Orne River Bridge
Last Sunday, as I try to do every year around the anniversary of D-Day to honor my grandfather's service in that epic battle, we watched "The Longest Day". For the first time I noticed the critical role of a small group of men in holding the Orne River Bridge.
Dropped into Normandy before the rest of the group, they had one objective: Capture and hold the bridge. The success of the entire mission was critical to this one task; without the bridge tanks and supplies could not get into Normandy. The men were charged to "hold until relieved" - no matter how long it took.
This scene left me reflecting on the strategic kingdom assignments God gives us. Sometimes we realize it; most often we don't. We wonder why we are "stuck" in a small area while what we perceive as the "real battle" rages elsewhere. We don't realize that God intends for us to hold the bridge to facilitate the ultimate victory.
Maybe you're fighting a spiritual battle at work. Maybe you're serving faithfully in the church nursery. Perhaps you are on the prayer team for a missionary you perceive as doing the "real work". God might call you into focusing on one person for years, developing a deep relationship for His purposes. From a kingdom perspective, you may just have an assignment within a unit that is holding a key bridge.
God puts together specialized "units" (churches) for His purposes. And He gives specific gifts to individuals in those churches to fulfill those purposes. But it all fits together in an amazing plan that only God can orchestrate.
The failure to hold the Orne River Bridge could have changed the course of history. If the Allieds had not taken Normandy, they may not have been in a position to liberate Europe and the concentration camps. Thankfully we will never know, because the men did hold the bridge and the invasion was a huge success. Though not without casualties, the men did indeed "hold until relieved" - mission accomplished.
Wherever God has placed you, He has a strategic plan in mind. Whether you see the big picture or not, trust that He does. Keep doing the last job He gave you to do - and ask for His grace to "hold until relieved".