God’s remarkable providence on D-Day

28 May 2024


Looking back, we might think that the success of D-Day was a foregone conclusion.

This was far from the case in reality.

War is always full of uncertainties and D-Day is a prime example. On 6 June 1944, as the UK and its allies launched the most daring military operation code-named ‘Operation ‘Overlord’, there was no certainty of victory, nor could anyone predict and control events leading up to and on D-Day.

There were huge logistical challenges to consider, the massive ‘Atlantic Wall’ defences to overcome, and knife-edge decisions to be made.

Leaders at the time recognised that there was also much prayer needed.

They recognised their need for God’s help, and contemporaries saw the providence of God in circumstances surrounding the invasion, including critical German mistakes.

Numerous things came together at just the right time, each of which was crucial for success. Many of these were factors beyond the control of human planning and organisation.

All the leaders of the time prayed. The President, the King and the most senior Generals were all unashamed to call for prayer and even to lead people in prayers to Almighty God. The vast majority of people in the UK would have responded to such calls for prayer whether in private or in corporate worship.

And these prayers were answered. The God who rules the weather and the waves and the hearts and minds of the enemy did wondrous things, allowing the Allies to step forward to victory. What is more, the nation recognised that prayers were answered, and leaders and others were unashamed to express their thanks to Almighty God for his grace and mercy in enabling the victory.

We serve a prayer-answering God. He has answered prayers in the past, and he can do it again. When the nation has turned to God in humble prayer in the past, God in his gracious mercy has answered. The lesson for today is that concerted prayer for our nation can change history again as it has in the past.

Our Head of Public Policy Tim Dieppe contributed two chapters to the book Beyond the Odds: Providence in Britain’s Wars of the 20th Century, John Scriven and Tim Dieppe, Wilberforce Publications, 2021.

A commemorative casebound edition of Beyond the Odds – Providence in Britain’s Wars of the 20th Century has been released to mark the 80th Anniversary of D-Day. You can order it on the Wilberforce Publications website.

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