It was a cold frigid wintry night. The troops huddled near the flames of the campfire in an attempt to keep warm. Their ill-clad bodies were almost numb from being frost-bitten. The morale among the men was very low; were they fighting a losing cause? As the men glanced at the General they were drawn to the look of despair upon his face. He was their inspiration, their fearless leader, but now, seemingly facing defeat his countenance had faltered. What were they going to do?
As the flames continued to lick the frosty night air, some of the men thought of their families. It was Christmas, meager dinners were being planned…………the War had been hard on many folk…………..money was used to support the needs of the Army, but even for them food was scarce. So here they sat, hungry, cold, and many in ill health, determined to fight for the cause of Freedom.
The General was indeed in a state of despair. His soldiers had not had a good meal for weeks. With a broken countenance he watched his men huddled together near the fire. Bloody footprints of his men without shoes could be seen in the snow. Half of his men were scheduled to be discharged at the years end. Within his mind there were no answers, yet his heart was afire with the need of persevering. To retreat would be a disaster, all that they had fought so determinedly would be lost. No, they just could not go back, they must press onward! But how? Knowing that he did not have the answer to that question the General took his request to the One who could give him direction, so he poured his heart out to his Heavenly Father.
In the stillness of the wintry night one could hear the drunken revery of the enemy encamped across the river. Although the Hessian’s were known for their abuse of alcohol, the minds of the General’s men was focused on the food, clothing and warmth that the enemy enjoyed. It just did not seem fair, but then life is not often fair. The men were suddenly taken aback by the presence of their Leader. He seemed to have a glitter in his eyes, his countenance was that of hope, the tone of his voice was that of encouragement. “Men, God Almighty has given me a plan”
The trip to the river was arduous to say the least. It was Christmas Day, and two of his men had gone on to their Maker. As they crossed the Delaware the shore-line came into view in the early morning hour and they could see the camp of their enemy. The scent of fire-burning wood was as the scent of expensive cologne. The enemy was still asleep after a hard night of partying, unsuspecting that a surprise attack was at their doorstep. Because of the snow, blustery winds and freezing rain, the British did not send out their pre-dawn patrol. God was so good!
Colonel Rall had sensing that an attack from the Continental army was possible had asked for more troops but was denied. Apparently the British considered the American Army to be in such a disarray that an attack upon their troops was unlikely. In addition, Colonels Rall’s officers strongly insisted that walls and fortresses be built, but he ignored the suggestion to construct fortifications. Bad move! Once again, the providence of God!
The rest is history as the saying goes. The Hessian and British troops did not even have time to get dressed when the surprise attack came upon them. General Washington ended up with about 5 wounded men, two dead from freezing. Colonel Rall was fatally wounded as well as over 80 of his men; and 22 wounded. Because of this Christmas Day victory of General Washington, the morale of the American people was heightened and many more men enlisted in the cause for freedom. It was God that worked in George’s heart, both to will and to do of His own good pleasure.
Sadly, Secular historians omit the divine interventions in the founding of this great Nation. It is now our responsibility to teach our children and grandchildren the truth. The Lord worked through people like George Washington to establish this Country as One Nation under God.