Can you hear what the past tells you about how great God’s love is?
We’ve just enjoyed a wonderful holiday to Tasmania, an island state south of mainland Australia. When the Europeans settled our land, they used the island as a convict prison.
These people were sent there on tall ships to harsh and dangerous lives, far away from family and friends at Port Arthur. Yet, some found hope in their circumstances.
As we listened to the stories of the survivors about the terrible conditions, we couldn’t help but admire their strength and determination. I loved the way God helped them to get through what were very difficult circumstances.
But, I hear you say, “Hang on! They were in jail, right? Weren’t they there as punishment for wrongdoing?”
Some of the saddest stories were about the convicts transported from England because they did something small, like pinching a loaf of bread to help feed a starving family.
Some, even after gaining their freedom, were sent back to prison because they spoke to a guard the wrong way. Many of the stories reminded me of Joseph and the injustices dished out to him at the hand of so many people over and over again, then how God’s love delivered him.
Even the structures testify to their skills and care while they were building. A generation believing Jesus would return soon, they had to spread His gospel further and faster than ever before. Nothing to make them believe that the work of their hands would still be standing over a hundred years later.
As we visited the ruins that are still standing after being devastated by bush fires and an earthquake, I could only admire the testimony they told. They shout of talented craftsmen, of the care taken, the creative imaginations put to good use, and lots of hard work. I could see God’s love there.
So, what is it that God wants us to hear from such testimonies? I believe He wants us to know that no matter how difficult our circumstances, how unfairly we are being treated, He will not only help us through it, but He can preserve the work of our hands that will tell others of His love for generations to come.
“The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.” Proverbs 20:7
What do you hear God’s love telling you through history?