CYBER PASTOR VISIT
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
There is an interesting living parable of a submerged ghost town in Somerset County, Maine.
The village of Flagstaff, which took its name from a flagpole which had been erected by Benedict Arnold’s men during their famous march in 1775, drew its first permanent settlers in the early 1800’s. They came for the rich soil of the Dead River floodplain, for the power available from the outlet of the naturally-occurring Flagstaff Pond, and especially the area’s valuable timber.
For the next century, the people of Flagstaff and Dead River lived and worked, went to school and raised their families. But in 1930 the Central Maine Power Company advised the residents of these two small towns that their homes would eventually be condemned, becoming public eminent domain, destined to be flooded in order to increase the size of the man-made Flagstaff Lake. This was justified by the powerbrokers of that generation and region in order to produce the needed additional electricity for the people that lived downstream. The families of Flagstaff and Dead River began to pack up, selling their property to the Central Maine Power Company, feeling powerless as they became one more human casualty towards progress.
Even though some families resisted, refusing to give up property and home, it didn’t stop the inevitable. You could physically see the loss of hope – improvements and repairs stopped. What was the use of painting a house that would soon be at the bottom of a lake? Why fix anything when the whole village would soon be wiped out? Week by week and month by month, the whole town became more and more run down, neglected and abandoned to its destiny. During the summer of 1949, smoke engulfed Flagstaff as the crews burned the brush that remained. A year after that, the Long Falls Dam was completed, its gates shut, and the towns of Flagstaff and Dead River were under water.
In his book Unfinished Business, Halford Luccock recounts the telling of this historical event by a man who was there. This man concluded: “Where there is no faith in the future, there is no power in the present.”
How many people give up on this present life because they feel all hope for the future is gone? How many people raise the white flag of surrender on the pole of life, believing it can’t, it won’t get better? Do you have faith in the future that God has carved out for you? Do you believe that even when it appears that life itself will be swallowed up in disappointment and loss, their remains eternal hope?
Remember God’s promise today (Selected, Isaiah 43:1-5):
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