What a difference a year can make. Only twelve months before the United States and Britain were reeling from massive defeats at the hands of the Japanese. The Pacific was a Japanese lake. The Germans were at the gates of Moscow, and the British army was barely hanging on in North Africa.

But the same time the next year, things were different. The Japanese navy had suffered an incalculable defeat at Midway, their army had been soundly defeated on Guadalcanal, and the US military was making great headway in their “island hopping” campaign in the Pacific. Still, they had a long, bloody road ahead of them. The Japanese were not giving up any time soon.

In Europe, the entire German Sixth Army was completely surrounded by the Soviets at Stalingrad. In another six weeks, some 250,000 German soldiers would be removed from the battlefield in Russia, and Hitler’s empire would never recover from the loss.

In North Africa, the Allies had launched Operation Torch. America had landed in North Africa and was quickly linking up with British forces to finish off the once invincible Afrika Korps of General Rommel. Things were looking better. Not finished, but better for the Allies.

Think about that today when you think about cleaning up the mess in Washington DC or fighting Islamic jihadism or facing down North Korea. It took years of determination, planning, blood and sweat…and a whole lot of prayer to bring down the evil empires of the Nazis and Imperial Japan. It will take years to do the same against the problems we face today. Hang in there.