Union Ridge Church

May 4, 2020

by Reverend Dan on May 4, 2020

“Abraham begat Isaac, and Isaac begat Jacob, and Jacob begat Joseph . . .”

                                                                                                Matthew 1:2


It sure is a lot of begetting in the Bible. I guess without TV and computers and smart phones they had more time to beget on their hands.

Ever wonder why the Bible does that? List all those genealogies? Two reasons. First, it is important to the story of Jesus to show His lineage. The prophecies speak of that lineage and it is through them that the royal and covenantal ancestry is established, and the prophecies brought to fruition. But another reason is the role history plays in all our lives.

It is important to know who you are, and that begins with where you came from. Some people want to make sure they “uphold the family name”. Some want to rise above their circumstances. Many children who are adopted, in older life, seek out the origins of their birth to help complete the picture of who they are. Our very first sense of being comes from the people around us when we are young and impressionable. Who we are is in our DNA (literally) but also it is where we come from.

What got me thinking about all this was Friday’s devotional, and the mention of the little town of Lively. When I think of that little town, (pop, 54), I know of its history for the past sixty years. I know my younger brother’s wife grew up there. I know a set of twins and I spent many hours in the barbershop (their father’s) and in the fire house there learning the songs of the 60’s and 70’s to play before crowds of thousands – hundreds - tens of people. But what about before that? What was the origin of the town? Who started it? Where did it get its name? A little research revealed nothing about the town, only that one delegate to the state assembly – Robert O. Norris, Jr. – was born there, and many years before that George Washington’s mother was born there. (The town is so small it is not even incorporated.) And yet, that town has touched and shaped the lives of many generations of people. People who were born there, who made their living there, who had families there, and who died there. They lived and laughed and loved and cried and hoped and dreamed, all in the little town of Lively.

I wonder why we don’t pay more attention to history. Not the “big” stuff – wars, pandemics, tragedies, scandals – but the little, day-to-day stuff. We live so much more of our lives in the day-to-day than in major moments and events, and I am finding the older I get the more I tend to remember the “little” things instead of the “big” ones. The pizza at Grumpy’s, the fire department’s Labor Day weekend fundraiser and dance, the drug store soda fountain, the time and temperature sign at bank on the corner, the night John got mad and knocked over a soda machine all by himself. All part of Lively’s glorious history, and all part of my history. All part of what made me who I am.

Since we all have some time on our hands these days, instead of thinking about the Coronavirus that’s consuming every news story, think about the things that made you who you are today. Think back to the normal, everyday times and places and events that shaped your life. And give thanks that they have brought you to this place in time. There is no wasted or unimportant moment in the lives God has given us. Each moment needs to be cherished for the gift that it is.


“Father, Thank you for the times that make us who we are. Help us to embrace and live each moment of each day. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.”



Rev. Dan