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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Why I Teach History

History is made by daily decisions.  One choice leads to another which paves a road you’ll call life.

Think of just the last 100 years.  Countries desire to be the best along with militant friendships led to World War I.  The rage over the punishments under the Treaty of Versailles fueled Nazi Germany and led to World War II.  The Yalta Conference meeting between Roosevelt, Churchill, and Stalin would pave the way to situating the Soviet Union as a world power and lead to its the eventual  takeover of most of Eastern Europe.  Broken promises led to the separation of an entire continent and a 40+ year period of tension, anxiety and inconclusive conflict in several countries throughout the world. 

Like a book, one chapter leads to the next, and though individually, we may have little say in what the country or the world does, we do still have a voice to make and tell our own story.  Tis our choice and responsibility.

Just this week, my Economics class asked why I was teaching about the national debt.  It is so huge ($18 trillion… $18,000,000,000,000), impossible to overcome, and what can I/we do about it anyway? 

To answer that question, I teach it because the debt situation we are in is a stepping stone in history…one that hasn’t been fully realized yet, though we have seen the signs (recession and housing crash of 2007-2008).  Eventually the country will have to make hard decisions about the debt and really set their minds to cut spending and/or collecting more taxes and both choices are not popular to the general public.  In Greece, when spending was cut to relieve their debt crisis, the people revolted through nationwide strikes, violent and sometimes deadly riots and torching banks.  Will that be our nation’s next chapter as well?  I teach because we are making history and if we do not look ahead, we will continue to fall behind in our own ignorance.

So what can you do about it?  
  1. Pray for our leaders.  1 Timothy 2:1-2 says “First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.”  
  2. Choose to be a leader yourself, taking a position of government/political authority or campaigning and speaking out for what you believe.  
  3. But most of all, I want to challenge you to take up the pen of your life and be ever aware of the choices you are making and how they pave the path of your life.  Know that the friends you make and the jobs you take will play a part in your story as a whole.  Know that you can learn from others mistakes and though you may not be able to solve the U.S. debt crisis, you are solely responsible for your own wealth and potential debt crisis.  

You may not be known in U.S. History but it is, at current, a mystery to how your history will touch the lives of those around you.

“Few will have the greatness to bend history itself; but each of us can work to change a small portion of events, and in the total; of all these acts will be written the history of this generation.”  -Robert Kennedy

As a Christ follower, I like to take note of how His Story changed not only human history in paving the way to right relationship with God but also how His Story has impacted me personally.  I pray that as I write my story, the choices I make will reflect Him and that He gets all the glory.

So…what will be your story?  That is for you to decide.

Until next time,
In Christ,

Joy Lynn