Columbus Day: Go Forward
Praise Your Name Lord God of all the earth. You are in all, over all, and above all. How we thank You for always being with us. Sometimes we may not be able to feel Your presence, but the fact remains, according to Your own Word, You are God with us (Isaiah 7:14).
Today we praise You, Almighty God, for the example of Your servant Christopher Columbus, the fearless and faithful sailor who followed Your call, and much like Abraham, knew not where he was going (Hebrews 11:8). Only by unwavering faith did he continue forward, carried by Atlantic breezes but led by Holy Spirit winds. Believing he would reach Asia, he landed near a much better land, a land You ordained from the beginning of time.
Wisdom teaches, “Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank” (Proverbs 22:29, NIV). Like Moses, Joseph, and Mordecai before him, Columbus stood before royalty. Divinely gifted with sincerity, religious devotion, and ocean navigational skills, the young mariner’s zeal moved Queen Isabella of Spain and she provided for his trip. A new trade route would be nice, but moreover the Queen thought of opening a new field to Christian missions, as Christ commanded (Matthew 28:18-20).
True to Your nature and promise, Lord God, on October 12, 1492, Columbus found land. He stepped ashore on what was most likely one of the Bahama Islands off Florida, and he named the island San Salvador, “Holy Savior.” Holy Savior! San Salvador! What a prophecy! “For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10).
Glory to You, Almighty God, for we see Your hand in Columbus’s journey. Not only did You provide the means, but history shows us that his voyages led to the spreading of the Gospel to two continents. Praise You Sovereign Lord! May the whole earth be filled with Your glory!
We thank You for this brave sailor, who continued to sail though met by many difficulties, and so became an emblem of faith and trust in Christ Jesus for years to come; a figure honored with a holiday for most of our history.
Yet, Lord God, “the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy” (John 10:10). And like all gifts from You, so too the legacy of Columbus has been pillaged by the serpentine prowler.
Lord, You know the radical leftists in the United States are trying to erase our great history. Christopher Columbus is only one of many who have been villainized by these villains. Like Stalin in the Soviet Union, Mao in China, and Hitler in Germany, to name a few of satan’s minions, the American Marxists, aka Democrat Party, are trying to erase our great historical figures and rewrite the Judeo-Christian founding of our nation.
And You know when these evildoers try to erase history, that, in their hubris, they are trying to erase You, the Sovereign of all the Universe! In their arrogance, they believe they can! Yet we have the hope of un-erased history and see the disgrace, defeat and derision of Stalin and Hitler; and eventually we believe the same shall overtake the Mao travesty.
Father, surely this erasure of the Creator is blasphemy of the Holy Spirit! For the evil the Washington DC Uni-Party is perpetrating on people throughout the world, along with their excessive selfishness and lack of compassion for humanity, I cry out to You, “please destroy these enemies of the Lord!” Yet Father, You are merciful. Not my will, but Yours be done.
We ask You now in the mighty power of Jesus’ Name, protect our nation. Purge the evil from among us. Strengthen Your church. Watch over Your children. Guard all children. “Teach us to realize the brevity of life, so that we may grow in wisdom” (Psalm 90:12). Help us to fear You for this is the beginning of wisdom. Then “we say with confidence: The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?'” (Hebrews 13:6).
Thank You Jesus for taking our cares upon You (1 Peter 5:7). In our weakness, Your strength is made perfect (2 Corinthians 12:9).
Lord God, thank You for Christopher Columbus and his zeal to go into the unknown. Thank You for the island of San Salvador, “Holy Savior!” whose very name honors our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Thank You that Columbus’s voyages led to the evangelizing of two continents.
Lord, we thank you for the brave souls who opened up new worlds in which to preach the gospel.
May we be so brave to preach the Gospel in our own nation. And likewise to “Go Forward” in standing up for Jesus this day and always.
In the Name of Jesus Christ, Who left Glory to save sinful people, Amen.
*The parts about the Bahamas, San Salvador, Queen Isabella, evangelizing two continents, adapted from: Stephen J. Lang, The Christian History Devotional (p. 299). Thomas Nelson. Kindle Edition.
Columbus Day: Go Forward
As soon as the soles of the feet of the priests…shall rest in the waters…the waters shall be cut off – Joshua 3:13
The people were not to wait in their camps until the way was opened, they were to walk by faith. They were to break camp, pack up their goods, form in line to march, and move down to the very banks before the river would be opened.
If they had come down to the edge of the river and then had stopped for the stream to divide before they stepped into it, they would have waited in vain. They must take one step into the water before the river would be cut off.
We must learn to take God at His Word, and go straight on in duty, although we see no way in which we can go forward. The reason we are so often balked by difficulties is that we expect to see them removed before we try to pass through them.
If we would move straight on in faith, the path would be opened for us. We stand still, waiting for the obstacle to be removed, when we ought to go forward as if there were no obstacles. —Evening Thoughts
What a lesson Columbus gave to the world of perseverance in the face of tremendous difficulties!
Behind him lay the gray Azores,
Behind the gates of Hercules;
Before him not the ghost of shores,
Before him only shoreless seas.
The good Mate said: “Now we must pray,
For lo! the very stars are gone.
Brave Admiral, speak, what shall I say?”
“Why, say, ’Sail on! sail on! and on!’”
“My men grow mutinous day by day;
My men grow ghastly wan and weak!”
The stout Mate thought of home; a spray
Of salt wave washed his swarthy cheek.
“What shall I say, brave Admiral, say,
If we sight naught but seas at dawn?”
“Why, you shall say at break of day,
’Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!’”
They sailed. They sailed. Then spake the Mate:
“This mad sea shows its teeth tonight.
He curls his lip, he lies in wait,
With lifted teeth, as if to bite!
Brave Admiral, say but one good word;
What shall we do when hope is gone?”
The words leapt like a leaping sword:
“Sail on! sail on! sail on! and on!”
Then, pale and worn, he kept his deck
And peered through darkness. Ah! that night
Of all dark nights! And then a speck—
A light! A light! A light! A light!
It grew, a starlit flag unfurled!
It grew to be Time’s burst of dawn.
He gained a world; he gave that world
Its grandest lesson: “On! sail on!”
Faith that goes forward triumphs.