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Lest We Forget: An Ode to Keeping the Faith

Anzac Cove, Gallipoli

The term “LEST WE FORGET” is synonymous with ANZAC and general war tradition. How incredible it is to think the powerful images of the losses of war still send tremors of respect through the minds of those left behind for those who were felled — for the fallen.

Lest we forget those who gave their lives in supreme acts of courage; lest we also forget, our very human nature to take for granted the divine providence of material and spiritual blessing that these men (and many women also) fought to protect. Humanity has a very patchy history regarding its innate propensity to utterly forget God and make up its own imperialist ideas, running the show itself.

Time and again throughout history we’ve shown that we ‘divide and conquer’ to our peril, and this is the lament Rudyard Kipling sought to convey in his 5-stanzaed “Recessional”, featuring the refrain, “LEST WE FORGET.” You see, this tradition that Kipling started is established and rooted in ‘fear of God’. We fear God and everything goes well; we fear him not and our kingdoms are compromised and eventually destroyed.

Kipling is perhaps seeing a time when the British Empire might follow the typical ways that all other empires have — those who have forgotten their God. It reveals underlying sadness and lament at the thought. What does it say about our kingdoms and our dictatorships? What threat of imperialism do we endure? Let us not forget to keep the faith, particularly of those who are unable to defend themselves.

Article Source: Steven John Wickham

The “Ode of Remembrance”

(by Lawrence Binyon, c. 1914) is featured commonly regarding ANZAC tradition, particularly its third and fourth verses:

They went with songs to the battle, they were young,

Straight of limb, true of eye, steady and aglow.

They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,

They fell with their faces to the foe.

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

LEST WE FORGET the fallen, and our God!

© Copyright 2008, Steven John Wickham. All Rights Reserved Worldwide.

Steve Wickham is a safety and health professional (BSc) and a qualified lay Christian minister (GradDipDiv). His passion in vocation is facilitation and coaching; encouraging people to soar to a higher value of their potential. Steve’s key passion is work / life balance and re-creating value for living, and an exploration of the person within us. An advocate for a fair and just life, Steve implements wisdom strategies to his life through a passion for Proverbial wisdom. His highest goal is doing God’s will, in enhancing his life, and the lives of others.

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