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THANKFULNESS: INTROSPECTION’S PERSONAL STORY


William Andrew Dillard

Americans who claim to be Christians have a fairly strong conviction that they are indeed a thankful people. Perhaps that perception arises out of experiences of the past century. It was only one hundred years ago that the world was relieved by the ending of World War I, the war said to be the bloodiest of all wars. With that war ending, the nation entered an era of unparalleled prosperity in the roaring twenties. But so, soon was the rug yanked out from under the nation with the financial collapse of 1929, followed by a decade-long, Great Depression. Next, came World War II, then the Korean conflict, and Vietnam. Through these monumental events also came industrial, educational, and technological break-through in rapid advancement. The inflationary measures that now loom as a doomsday pitfall, was viewed as a blessing a half century ago, When, at last, people had some money. Production of material things flooded the markets for people to buy. There came new cars, new houses, new clothes, and a million other things. People were happy. People were thankful. Really?
Some pundit said that “America is the only country on earth where people will trample you to get to annual sales items on the day after they proclaimed they were truly thankful for what they have.” Somehow, that paints a mental picture that is oxymoronic, and far from the humble, grateful spirit – the attitude of gratitude – so prominent among the early pilgrims. They knew it was only by the grace of God that they survived the harsh obstacles of life in an undeveloped land.
But thankfulness is not an attitude franchised by the poor, deprived, and/or oppressed upon their achieving better circumstances. It is rather a vastly important plank in the platform of wisdom to those who seize and employ its model. Whether poor or wealthy, ignorant or educated, ill or healthy, the blessings of the Almighty are superabundant to those who look for them. And, the look need not be far. A peek deep down inside at a view restricted to the individual and God tells it all, and it does not lie. What is the scene? Is it spoiled, selfish longing for some self-exalting acquisition of popularity, power, or material thing that will ultimately contribute to ruin? Is it gratefulness to God for life itself? Is it the mountainous blessings afforded God’s children, and a heart of thankful realization upon confronting or hearing of so many unfortunate cases which evoke a soft, sincere, whisper: “There, but by the grace of God go I.” Truly, those who know Jesus the Christ on a personal basis should be the most thankful people on the planet. Introspection! How does it tell your story?

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122 – May 01 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


America’s victory over England secured England’s liberty too
1748 – Dr. John Rippon of England,in a  letter addressed to Dr. James Manning, president of Brown University, said: “I believe all of our Baptist ministers in town, except two, and most of our brethren in the country were on the side of the Americans in the late dispute….We wept when the thirsty plains drank the blood of our departed heroes, and the shout of a king was among us when your well bought battles were crowned with victory; and to this hour we believe that the independence of America will, for a while, secure the liberty of this country, but if that continent had been reduced, Britain would not have long been free.” Dr. Rippon was one of the most influential Baptist ministers in England during the 19th century. At the age of 17, Rippon attended Bristol Baptist College in Bristol, England. After the death of John Gill, he assumed Gill’s pastorate, the Baptist meeting-house in Carter Lane, Tooley Street, which moved in 1833 to the New Park Street Chapel in London, from 1773 at the age of 20 until his death, a period of 63 years. Rippon’s church was later pastored byCharles Haddon Spurgeon before moving to the Metropolitan Tabernacle at Elephant and Castle inSouthwark.
Dr. Dale R. Hart: Adapted from: John T. Christian, A History of The Baptists (1922; reprinted., Nashville:  Broadman Press, 1926), 2:228
The post 122 – May 01 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST appeared first on The Trumpet Online.

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63 – March 04 – THIS DAY IN BAPTIST HISTORY PAST


The Heroine of Burma

Four preachers gathered at the grave site in March of 2004 where they were rewarded for their efforts.  Two Americans and two Burman men had made the trip-all intent on finding the place where the remains of Ann Judson had been laid to rest.  Ann had originally been buried under a Hopia tree near the waters of a Bay in the Indian Ocean, but with the incursion of the waters, it had been necessary to disinter her body and bury it a bit further inland.  They were still in sight of the ocean, and they stood there in silence as they thought of the faithfulness of their Heroine-Ann of Ava-and her years of devoted service.  A national had written: Though Ann’s thirteen years in Burma exceeded the average for those early days, her death, when prospects looked so promising, was a great loss to the growing church.

Thirteen years . . . . .  which must have seemed an eternity crowded into that short period of time.  Adoniram and Ann were two and a half years away from home before they received their first letter from the homeland!  The first home letter was laid in their hands, and after three years of waiting, came the assurance that the Baptist churches of America had accepted the Judson’s as their first missionaries and assumed responsibility for their support.

When the hour of her departure from this life came, Ann’s mate was away serving the Lord.  As the dusk settled upon the scene, Ann’s spirit soared into the brightness of an eternal dawn.  Some weeks later her broken-hearted husband returned.

Dr. Dale R. Hart, adapted from:  “This Day in Baptist History III”  David L. Cummins. pp. 131 – 132

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