There were many heroes in the story, beginning with the airmen themselves. They braved harrowing missions into Nazi held territory, survived being shot down and parachuting to earth, then endured months in harsh conditions in the mountains evading capture by the Germans. The unsung heroes of the tale were the Serb people, who welcomed the downed Americans with open arms, sheltered them, hid them and fed them from the absurdly meager stocks of food they possessed, at great risk to themselves. The Nazis inflicted horrendous reprisals on anyone they even suspected of aiding Allied personnel, yet the Serbian people were unflinching in their assistance to the Americans. Of course the OSS agents who conceived and executed the mission despite opposition from some on the Allied side were truly inspiring in their efforts, not to mention the pilots who took absurd risks to make it all happen.
The author said after the war many of the people involved in that historic operation, having seen some of the things that went on, become disillusioned by government’s disturbing tendency to trust the wrong people and to betray the people it should trust. Sadly I am pretty sure that tendency continues to this day. My guess is that to this very moment there continues to be a perverse penchant in our government to trust people that should not be trusted resulting in damage to our nation’s best interests.
Perhaps this is not happening today, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it is. How am I to think biblically about this if it is happening? It is easy to become frustrated and cynical about government. There is so much that happens in regard to our now massive government systems that seems almost perverse and idiotic. I find that there are two truths that can help us respond to such issues. The first is that we live in a fallen world full of fallen people. Should we be surprised if fallen people do unhelpful things? Of course not. Romans 8:20 says that the whole creation is “subjected to frustration.” One of the marks of this broken world is a certain tendency toward futility that will show up over and over in many ways. I can calm myself with the thought that the frustrating things I see in so many places in the world, including government, are but manifestations of the brokenness of this world. I should not be surprised by it. While we should always pursue better, we should expect this futility. It is the natural state of a fallen world.
The second helpful biblical truth is that God is king over it all. He rules over all the earth. Daniel 2:20-21 says, “Praise be to the name of God forever and ever; wisdom and power are his. He changes times and seasons. He deposes kings and raises up others.” The maneuvering, scheming, politicking and power plays of men will not thwart God’s plans and purposes. No matter what people may do, God is still sovereign. I do not need to be frustrated by what people do, for my peace is in the fact that God is the one who determines the outcome of this world. Thinking biblically is a source of great encouragement in a fallen world!