This poem became famous for its application eighty-three years ago to a nation facing war with another government separated by only twenty miles of water and vastly outnumbered. So, it finds a place in our times. We face a peril decidedly more dangerous and frightful, for we see not the face of the enemy whose desire is to devour us. So let us know this poem as it defines our present times, as the daily spiritual battle in which we are engaged.
I was going to post this next year for New Year 2024, but brother James reminded me not to be so haughty as to assume plans so far in advance. ~G.W.
Happy New Year — “God Knows” was the original title of this poem by its author.
Jesus answered, “I AM the Way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” [John 14:6] Read full chapter
Poem Background Notes:
“The Gate of the Year” is the popular name given to a poem by Minnie Louise Haskins. The title given it by the author was “God Knows”. She studied and then taught at the London School of Economics in the first half of the twentieth century.
The poem, written in 1908 and privately published in 1912, was part of a collection titled The Desert.
It caught the public attention and the popular imagination when King George VI quoted it in his 1939 Christmas broadcast to the British Empire, at the beginning of WWII. Britain alone at the time was facing a greatly superior German War Machine. The poem may have been brought to his attention by his wife, Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Consort).
The book The Servant Queen and the King She Serves published for Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday, its foreword being by that monarch, says that it was the young Princess Elizabeth herself, aged 13, who handed the poem to her father.