As I’ve mentioned in other posts, the story of the nearly 250 French Huguenots who were martyred on Florida’s beautiful shores in 1565, so close to their dream of religious freedom, has always been very close to my heart. It has inspired me to write, and also to find stories, songs, and poems that relate to their tragic situation. Recently I discovered an old hymn by Isaac Watts, "Am I A Soldier of the Cross?" written in the 1720s, that beautifully sums up the faith and courage of these forgotten men:
"AM I A SOLDIER OF THE CROSS?"
By Isaac Watts
Am I a soldier of the cross,
A follower of the Lamb,
And shall I fear to own His cause,
Or blush to speak His Name?
Must I be carried to the skies
On flowery beds of ease,
While others fought to win the prize,
And sailed through bloody seas?
Are there no foes for me to face?
Must I not stem the flood?
Is this vile world a friend to grace,
To help me on to God?
Sure I must fight if I would reign;
Increase my courage, Lord.
I'll bear the toil, endure the pain,
Supported by Thy Word.
Thy saints in all this glorious war
Shall conquer, though they die;
They see the triumph from afar,
By faith's discerning eye.
When that illustrious day shall rise,
And all Thy armies shine
In robes of victory through the skies,
The glory shall be Thine.
Rest in peace, Matanzas martyrs.
(c) 2012 Joyously Saved