Part 2- Joan as General
It is not uncommon for a military leader to astonish the world and leave a mark on history. Alexander the Great, Julius Ceasar, Genghis Khan, and Napoleon to name a few. What sets Joan apart from many of them, is first that she is a peasant woman, but also her deep religious conviction. The entire reason Joan left her home was to follow the command of God, her first duty was as His disciple the second was as the general of the French army. Mark Twain summarizes what Joan did into five “great deeds” which are-the raising of the siege, the victory of Patay, the reconciliation at Sully-sur-Loire, the coronation of the King, and the Bloodless March. Joan did not only inspire her men to be stoic warriors but also to be devoted followers of Christ. The greatest example of this we find is in the retailing of the Siege of Orlean.
Joan’s desire to be exactly obedient and that all around her would strive for purity invoked the blessings of heaven. The women prostitutes following the French army received their conviction notice soon after Joan’s arrival, and the whole army was invited to partake of communion and attend confession. This proved Joan’s belief that God was supporting the French cause, but also her determination to be exactly obedient to any and all God’s commands. This obedience did not come without blessings, and in Joan’s case, they came as miracles.
Joan’s voices were prompting her to crown Charles VII as King of France, this was only possible after she lifted the siege at Orleans. The city was surrounded, and the leader of the French instructed the goal to approach the side on the south side of the river. There were two ways to cross the river, the first was through the heavily guarded bridge that was under English control, or to take the boats across. Due to a strong headwind crossing the river by boat was impossible, Joan was stuck.
It was not until after the situation became aware to Joan, and she found herself on the southside of the river without the capacity to help her French brothers in Orleans that God choose to work his miracle. When all hope seemed lost, eyewitnesses to the fact describe a change in weather. The wind began to blow the direction Joan needed to go, enabling her to climb aboard a boat and ride triumphantly into Orleans. Joan would go on to lift the siege and perform many miraculous exploits. She was a fearless leader with the capacity to act as a link for the French and the hand of God.
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