History is a weapon

Sarah Edwards, pastor

My grandmother sang it to my mother. She sang it to me, my sisters and brothers.  I sang it to my children.   And my children sang it to my grandchildren. The history about three little pigs that none of us have personally known. The smart pig didn’t seek a ‘hand-out’ but rather had money, went shopping and bought whatever he/she wanted. One of the other two pigs was lazy. He did nothing but stayed home while the third pig was venturous, constantly crying wee, wee, wee all the way home. Yep, I like most of you have been guilty of using history as a weapon. Five generations my family passed on this legacy about pigs that never existed!

We too easily forget that history isn’t what actually happened, but rather the lessons we want to teach from the stories we extricate in telling history. Whether they are real or true is mute. Every weapon is a means used to defend against or defeat another.

Our selection of what we teach society shapes their view of how what came to be and in turn what we understand as possible. The choice of which history we teach can never be ‘neutral’ or ‘subjective’. We cannot simply be passive. If we choose  to follow either; we’ve made the choice to follow a ‘set agenda’ or a guide with hidden prejudices that will serve their interest to continue this world as it is or make a new world order to suit their future. Individually, we must determine whose interests will shape our personal understanding of our worldview. Every weapon can be a tool if it is held right [Romans 4:15].

History is a weapon whenever it’s telling the story you long for. Real history never begins with us nor does it begin at the end. Most assuredly, history is never history when anyone else tell your story. History then becomes a collection of individual limited precepts fueled by media and casted the same as any standardized nursery rhyme into innocent minds. My children looking at my smiling face while tickling their tiny toes made them happy regardless of whatever I said about those three little pigs. They subjected themselves to it.

Every weapon is designed to cripple, kill or destroy for our good or theirs. It’s not what others say but rather what we don’t know that is confusing us mentally, emotionally and/or spiritually.  History as a weapon can intimidate insecure people into silence.

Ask Moses. His personal history was not fully understood as a child. He was raised in the higher echelon of that society and assimilated into their culture as if he too was an Egyptian and overseer of the slaves. Until that faithful day when God tugged at his heart as he watched two fellow Hebrew Israelites fighting among themselves. He realized except for the grace of God it could have been him; yet he wasn’t a slave to the King.  He broke up their fight but one was killed in the process.  Moses had to flee from what had been familiar and comfortable to him  all his life in order for God to re-position him to manifest HIS-story: To lead the Hebrew Israelites to true freedom. Moses understanding the TRUTH about his personal history did not began in the palace but the backside of the desert [Exodus 2].

Fire is a weapon, however small; it can destroy acres of land or fry a chicken to satisfy your taste buds.  Other weapons can be used in combat, provide provisions for your family or defend yourself. History is a weapon that has different story versions and contains different lessons. Some teach us that this is what has always been and what always will be. Others counsel that we shouldn’t mistake transient dominance for intrinsic superiority. Lastly, some histories paint a picture where only the elites have the power to change the world, while others point out that social change is rarely commanded from the top down.

God has given His children the ability to make their voices visible for righteousness sake. Weapons of warfare that is not carnal, but mighty in pulling down strongholds [2 Corinthians 10:1-4]. Are you telling your history? If not, why not? God has made you significant.  There is nothing new under the sun [Ecclesiastes 1:9].

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