“Things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us. We will not hide them from their children, but tell to the coming generation the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders that he has done.” ( Psalm 78:3-4, ESV)
God’s faithfulness in the past is the cornerstone upon which the future is laid. The Bible is not as much a history book as it is a testimony to how God has been at work in history creating the path that leads to his kingdom on earth. In the text of the Bible’s pages, we meet people who put their lives in God’s hands when the way forward was not clear. Their only incentive for trusting in God was an understanding of how God had come through in the past. Someone told them the story of an amazing God who is out to save the world and who invited them to join him. By believing in God’s trustworthiness, they were able to move us one step closer to the vision that God has for this world.
The same God of the people in the Bible is inviting us to trust him and join him in creating a world that increasingly resembles the world that God has envisioned from the beginning of time. Do you trust this God of history enough to join him in creating the Kingdom of his love and grace for the world?
More importantly, have you passed on to the next generation the stories of how God has been there for you? How will our children learn of God’s faithfulness if we don’t tell them? How will they be prepared to create the future God has in mind for this world if we don’t share our experience of God’s faithfulness?
As we celebrate our history, let’s celebrate the people of this great church whose faith was passed on to us. Let’s celebrate the accomplishments of these great people, but let’s not settle for a faith that points only to the past. Let’s celebrate the living God that is still at work leading us into an even greater future. Let’s teach our children about a dynamic God who is faithful and who calls us to come alongside him in creating a better future for all. Let’s write our chapter of history with courage and boldness and faithfulness— just like those who have gone before us. And let’s pass it on to our children.
Rev. Dale Cohen
Senior Pastor of Canterbury United Methodist Church