One of the classes you study in school is History. The definition of history is: “The study of past events, particularly in human affairs. Also the whole series of past events connected with someone or something.”
How do we learn and change and grow if we don’t know what happened in the past? The past is our teacher. The past is our experience. The past is our history. You can NOT cancel history class.
HISTORY CAN’T BE FORGOTTEN
The past is a part of the sum total of the history of mankind, and of each of us as individuals. I have a past that has made me who I am today – all of it – the good, the bad and the ugly. “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” (George Santayana)
Practically speaking, let’s just see why history is important – it gives us the resources to become better people; it teaches us about who we are; it helps us understand others and how they think or feel or live; we get a world view; it helps us not to repeat the same mistakes or even tragedies and overall history prepares us to be launched into the future. “A nation that forgets its past, has no future.” (Winston Churchill)
THE DIVINE INTERLOCKING
We are genetically connected to those generations who have gone before us. Did you know that in our own DNA are memories from our ancestors – memories of their struggles and hardships, their joys and triumphs. In essence, we carry them in us. We are part of a bigger story and part of a legacy, albeit good or bad. IF bad, we get the chance to do better and to be better. IF good, then we get to pass it on generation to generation. “If you don’t know history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree.” (Michael Chrichton)
So we are all connected to our ancestors who came before us. Sometimes you actually get to find out what they themselves were up against, and how they overcame.
My ancestors came to America on the Mayflower ship in 1620, exactly 400 years ago. They were called Pilgrims, and I myself was even born in Plymouth. My ancestor was William Brewster, the Pastor of the first church in America. He was also an author, who wrote over 400 books. My heritage and who I am have become so much more valuable to me now that I know what my roots are. My kids and my grandkids didn’t seem much surprised that my roots are in Jesus and writing. “Of course they are Nani – that makes sense!” We laugh at that but really, if there was no record of it I would have NO way of knowing. It empowers me to continue on for the sake OF my children and grandchildren, and generations to come. I hope someday someone will be able to say, “Oh look – 10 generations back was this lady you’re related to (or maybe named after)- she loved Jesus and writing, just like YOU!” THAT is why we can NOT cancel history. We are all interlocked like puzzle pieces from the past to the present to the future.
Our culture has become a drive thru experience, where we want what we want and we demand it NOW. That thinking keeps us imprisoned to only the here and now, and only thinking about ME ME ME! God thinks in generational terms, about family lines, blessings, covenants, memorials, offerings, memories and acts of remembrance. We are not here by accident or some random twist of fate. We are each a part of a bigger story.
THE STORY MATTERS
“We will not hide them from our children, telling to the generation to come, the praises of the Lord, and His strength and the wonderful works He has done.” ((Psalm 78:4) “Tell your children about it, and let your children tell their children, and their children the next generation.” (Joel 1:3) “That these days should be remembered and kept throughout every generation, every family, every province, and every city…and that the memory of them should not perish among their descendants.” (Esther 9:28)
“The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you are likely to see.” (Winston Churchill)
Keep history in session for you and yours, and those generations yet to come. Leave behind a honorable legacy.
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