Changing History

     I love history but ... After everything is said and done, historians are only studying the past. They cannot really change the past. Theories about the past come and go, and change with each generation. However, the past is past. It is over. Historians will debate about history, but they can never change history. Only God can change history.

God alone can change history. When persons are reborn in Christ, their present, future, and, yes, even their past is changed. History is literarily rewritten. They are new creations. That bad choice, that sin, that catastrophe is placed under the blood of the Lamb, and everything starts fresh and new. A new history for new people.

Let me illustrate. 170 years ago my great-great-great- grandfather, whose passion was to kill Yankees, was a slave owner in Eastern Tennessee. With that inheritance, like most white Southerners who grew up in the 1960s, I grew up to mistrust African-Americans. Like so many people captured by their history and culture, present and future became my past. However, when I was a senior in high school, I was saved. Jesus Christ became my Lord and Savior. My attitudes changed. It took time, but prejudices disappeared.

Ultimately, I married my New Jersey wife, Karen, and we adopted three African-American children—whose ancestors, by the way, may have been owned by my great-great-great-grandfather!

Three of my children are African-American. Imagine! Quite literally, my history was rewritten. It has been changed irrevocably by my decision to invite Jesus Christ to be Savior of my life. In a real sense, family prejudice and death existing for generations ended in my generation. The destructive historical cycle that was part of my history has ended. No one, nothing can do that but the Lord. History has been rewritten!

My prayer is that if you do not know this God who can change history—even your history—these words might encourage you to invite Jesus Christ into your heart as Savior.

Daddy Is Carrying You

Why, big boy,” I forlornly asked, “Are you weeping? Daddy is carrying you!”
To cover myself with his mother, whom I earnestly wanted to believe I was not neglecting our youngest charge, I loudly repeated, “I AM carrying you. What else do you want?”
“I need mommy, Daddy, I need mommy,” 3-year-old Peter exclaimed. We were on vacation on Matinicus Island, ME, and we were on a long hike. And I was carrying our youngest son Peter.
Now, these are sublime words to my quickly tiring arms, but, Peter knew, as I knew, that my wife, his “mommy,” was not above implementing a needed maturity lesson, even on a three year. So I persevered.
With earshot of my lovely wife, Karen, I subtly but loudly quipped, “Why mommy? Daddy is carrying you just fine, right?”🙂🙂
“No, Daddy, I so tired that I need Mommy.”
Well, that was that. I gratefully handed him to my wife and Peter proceeded to tell her about his woes.
“I am tired, mommy. “
“My feet hurt.”
What the heck? I took care of those things for him. I was carrying my little boy as well as his mom! But I was missing the larger point . . .
His mommy listened to him and hugged him. That is all. I did that too. But Peter needed empathy and love from him mommy.
Peter reached a point where he needed his mommy. Period. Daddies are ok but the really serious hurts require the mommies–at least in my family. And it wasn’t just that Peter wanted to be carried; he needed to share his journey with someone who cared and, if need be, someone who would kiss a boo-boo or two. His journey had carried him from comfortable epistemology to uncomfortable metaphysics, a need for empathy, a need for revelation of the nature of being and beings, existence, time and space, and causality and he preferred his mother as a traveling companion on the latter leg of this summer morning journey.
Which is one reason I look forward to going to church every week. I want to be with my church family. I want to be with people of faith whose world views extend beyond
their epistemology. My epistemology—everyday struggles and challenges—can only take me so far. And in Church, I find again my way to the Cross.
I have walked all week to the beach and now I need my church family to help me a little. Lifting my hands in praise and adoration of a God who extends beyond my experience, I relish every praise song, every biblical truth. Out of the fog of doubt and tentativeness, I find in my church, people who can carry me the last 100 yards, who let me be myself, and love me anyway. They let me tell them the woes of the journey so they can remind me of the joy of the journey. And, ultimately, we always make it safely to the beach, together!