Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Army of the Trans'Mississippi Sunday Message


ATM Sunday Message

November 24, 2010

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Many of us are concerned about the effectiveness of our confederation. For all of our conferences, campaigns, movements, events and activities we are seemingly stuck in a rut. As someone once said, “The mountain labors and brings forth a mouse.” What is it that makes the effectiveness of our efforts mediocre when they could be miraculous? Could our limitations be a result of our own “Hindering Spirits?”

Now, hindering spirits are not floating in the air above us like Humming Birds inspecting a bright red flower. They are within us. And, I venture to name three such spirits which may be found among us today.

First, there is the “fighting spirit.” Of course, there is a fighting spirit that is good and proper. We are to endure hardness and fight the good fight. We need an aroused indignation against those who oppose us and all their evil works. Some of our members are peaceful because they do not believe anything enough, or they are too indifferent toward our cause to fight for it. I heard of a soldier who was asked how many of the enemy did he kill. “None,” was his reply. “But, I got as many of them as they got of me.” Unfortunately many of our members are just about as effective. We need a fighting spirit. However, too often we are fighting each other instead of our common enemy. The greatest danger to our cause is not from without, but from this hindering spirit within.

Then there is the “frivolous spirit.” We all like having a good time, and certainly our meetings should be enjoyable. But there is an inherent seriousness in our cause which requires that our manner and conduct match our purpose. The member who thinks of the SCV only as a hobby at which to “play” and have “fun,” should be shown photographs of our heroic Confederate forefathers lying dead and bloated on a battlefield. Then they need to be reminded that the very evil forces that killed them are even now attempting to discredit their cause, and erase their memory. How can we think of playing and having fun when the blood of our brave Confederate ancestors cry out from a hundred hillsides, “Where is my honor!”

Finally, there is the “fed-up spirit.” There is perhaps nothing more discouraging to our membership than to see someone who has worked long and hard for our Cause leave the SCV in disgust. We all get tired “in” the fight. But, we must never get tired “of” the fight. We will win some, we may lose some, but we must never quit. Our Confederate forefathers fought to defend our country. Now, they are depending on us to defend their honor and preserve their memory. To do this we must repel the hindering spirits that beset us and prevent us from fully accomplishing our mission. Remember……….

“To you, Sons of Confederate Veterans, we submit the vindication of the cause for which we fought…”

This is the responsibility of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, it was not given to any one else, therefore the Charge is, and must be, our defining characteristic. For the sake of our Confederate fathers and our proud Southern heritage, we must go forth into battle believing that God is our Champion and Vindicator. We must believe that, as we trust Him and follow Him, He will strengthen and guide us to victory over the enemies of truth. Psalm 18:2&3 states, “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower. I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from my enemies.” Then verse 47 goes on to tell us, “It is God that avengeth me…”

It is my prayer and sincere desire that our Lord bless each of you in His service, and in service to our just and most worthy Cause. Heb. 10:30…..

Bro. Len Patterson, Th.D

Chaplain, Army of Trans-Mississippi

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