This prayer was said by many English-speaking soldiers in the trenches of World War I.
Going into battle inevitably brings to the soldier’s mind the reality of death. A good soldier is willing to lay down his life for his friends, sacrificing his good for the good of all.
World War I was no exception and many soldiers went into battle with God on their mind, knowing they may meet him sooner than expected.
Here is a “Soldier’s Prayer” as printed in a book entitled The Power of Prayer, published in 1920, along with a brief explanation.
Here is a Soldier’s Prayer that has been offered by hundreds of thousands of English-speaking combatants in the trenches of France and Belgium.
Lord ere I join in deadly strife
And battle’s terrors dare,
First would I render soul and life
To Thine Almighty care.
And when grim death in smoke wreaths robed,
Comes thundering o’er the scene,
What fear can reach the soldier’s heart,
Whose trust in Thee has been?
Note well that the true soldier does not ask for any miraculous protection from shot and shell; what he asks is that he may have the consciousness of God’s presence and care and that he may be granted the saving grace of courage, the fruit of faith.