Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Century or Centuries (02/17/11)
TITLE: Grandparents - Looking at the Past as We Seek To Make An Impact on Our Grandchildren for the Future
By Kaye Swain
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I can't believe how much I've forgotten since I was in elementary school! I definitely won't be appearing on "Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader!" It would be much too embarrassing.
What is nice, though, is how quickly I can bring myself back up to speed to help them and how much I'm enjoying the refresher of World History this year with a grandson. He is in a Christian school and his textbook interweaves Christian and secular history, giving me a great panoramic view of God at work through the centuries.
This past week, I was again intrigued as we took turns reading the book to each other - a great way to study. He was studying a particularly dark and volatile century in the history of France - 1700. During that period, the French Revolution began, starting first with the nobles revolting against the monarchy. Eventually, that revolution morphed, first into a bourgeoisie revolution and later into a revolution of the "common people."
By the time this century was drawing to a close and the Revolution ended, hundreds of thousands of people had been arrested and over 40,000 people put to death - most by the guillotine.
What I found most interesting, and sad, was the statement in the book, History of the World in Christian Perspective, "At this point atheism reached its height in France...the terror was bloodiest at the same time that atheism was at its peak."
As I pointed out to my grandson, we live in a nation that has existed for over two centuries. Founded by Christians and using the Bible as their guideline, we have been singularly blessed by God. As the bitter weeds of atheism keep growing in our nation, though, we are seeing sad and even dark signs of peril for our own country. I have to wonder if someday, perhaps in another century, his grandchildren will read another history book, and learn about America when it was at its height of atheism. Will our history 100 years from now be as dark and bleak as this century in France's history or can we work together to set a positive example for our children and grandchildren, one of seeking after God with a whole heart, and watching the tide turn? Definitely important food for thought for all of us grandparents as we seek to make a powerful and purpose-full impact on our grandchildren!
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