Often history tells us of events, these are often wars, natural disasters, death, sporting events, inventions etc. Or it tells us about seemingly important people, kings and queens, leaders of thought, greatly talented people.
Personally, I find it hard to connect to those people and events a lot of the time. In our everyday world the majority of us aren't the great inspirational leader of a generation/movement, we aren't kings, queens or prime ministers and I certainly haven’t invented or discovered something that will change the world.
But we do play our part in the history being created in our lifetime. We also play a part in our own history and legacy. We have our own thoughts, own behaviours, personal responsibilities, and we contribute to the larger story as well as our own story. What has your story been for the last year or so? I'm sure if we look at it closely it’s been different to mine or just about anyone else’s, the things you have watched, the things you have done, the moments of hurt, the moments of joy, they are all different. But if we look at the bigger picture, we have all lived through a time of change, we have had to do our part, it can look like we have been in the same place.
We are currently living in a time where moments in history are being made at a rapid pace. Yes, England knocked Germany out of a footballing major tournament! and probably more seriously than that there has been a global pandemic. One that we haven’t seen the likes of for 100 years. Difficult decisions have had to be made; people have died. History has been made, is still being made, and the legacy of this will last for many years to come.
I have a t-shirt in my wardrobe that says, 'your past does not define your future'. I also have one that says, 'I refuse to believe this is a lost generation'.
I wear those shirts not because it is a nice slogan for a youth worker to wear but because I believe in both those statements.
I believe them because we have an individual ability to change our own future and an ability to come through the most difficult of situations and end up in a positive place.
Looking back on our history we can see the problems we still have in today’s world, poverty, crime, pride, greed, abuse, misuse of power to name just a few. They all still exist. However, we have and continue to move forward. I think it’s fair to say society has come a long way over a long period of time. It is not perfect, nor will it ever be, humans are too involved in it, as they should be.
This pandemic has etched itself into history, we will still know about the Covid-19 pandemic for probably hundreds of years to come, it will be written about as a defining moment in modern history. The clip of Boris Johnson telling us to stay home is UK history. But we played our part. You played your part. Two stories going on at the same time where we can look at the bigger picture, the one that will be talked about for many years ahead or we can look closer at what we did, how we have coped and how we will move forward.
This pandemic does not have to define our future, with a willingness to progress and the correct support, we all, can and will move forward onto new experiences and new history to be made. Personally, I can say I refuse to believe that this is a lost generation, I want to do my bit, play my part to support our young people so that they can define their futures.
The history of Jesus looks at his birth, life, and death. It looks at the picture of the stable, and the picture of the cross. This man claiming to be God, coming down to earth, to die for all. But if you look closer, look at the individuals, you see people changed, people whose history no longer defined them, you see stories that provoke response, people living in real community, and through that you begin to see Jesus as human. Both viewpoints of Jesus are powerful, but where I find the most truth is in between the views. It is sometimes difficult, but we can see that Jesus could be fully human and fully God. We can hold our personal history with our collective history together.
Throughout the bible you see history laid out in front of you, in the Old Testament before Jesus and in the New Testament with and after Jesus' time on earth. A common theme through it all is that life isn't easy. Life certainly hasn't been easy over this last 18 months. We need to hold that it hasn’t been easy collectively in one hand and all that we have experienced personally in the other. We also see in the bible is that by taking both our hands, offering them up just as you are, we can and will move forward with God. One thing that can be certainly said about the bible is that moving forward with God/Jesus lead to incredible outcomes. We talk about those outcomes throughout History.
This will be my last blog like this, when September rolls around again this page will be there to keep everyone up to date with what I am doing. Thank you if you have got this far and have read any of these posts. I hope they might have provoked thought.