“But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  1 Corinthians 15:57 

What comes to mind when you hear the word ‘victory’?  Victory, noun; (1) win: success in a contest against an enemy or opponent, or a particular contest or battle that is won (2) success: success in overcoming a difficult situation or an obstacle "Being able to get out of bed was a small victory in her struggle against the illness."  

Watching these children from Merrotte walk across a gravel yard from the kitchen to their classroom holding onto their daily lunch is a victory.  We cannot imagine what kind of difficult situations or obstacles they have gone through when not in school.  I have slept in the Church on several occasions and I can tell you that the vodou drums beat very loudly in Merrotte; pounding out a beat to attract evil spirits from near and far. 

These children attending Christ the King Lutheran School in Merrotte have a smile on their face because they have Jesus!  They have a smile on their face because they have their meal for the day in their hands as promised!  The vodou priest cannot claim their spot in Heaven.  The vodou priest lied when he told them there would be no food at school on this day. 

There are 16 children in this photo.  Thank you for sending four dollars for their lunch on this day.  What seems to be so little to us is such a large victory for them.  Barney Warren wrote a hymn titled ‘Victory’ in 1897 and its words are a wonderful way to close. 

“Hallelujah, what a thought!  Jesus full salvation brought, victory, victory; let the pow’rs of sin assail, Heaven’s grace can never fail, victory, victory.  Victory, yes, victory.  Hallelujah! I am free, Jesus gives me victory; glory, glory! hallelujah!  He is all in all to me.  I am trusting in the Lord, I am standing on His Word, victory, victory; I have peace and joy within, since my life is free from sin, victory, victory.  Shout your freedom everywhere, His eternal peace declare, victory, victory,  Let us sing it here below, in the face of every foe, victory, victory.  We will sing it on that shore, when this fleeting life is o’er, victory, victory; sing it here, ye ransomed throng, start the everlasting song: victory, victory.” 

Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown.  Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.  Amen. 

May God be with you…Jay