The Good Old Days Are Never As Good
by Rev Greg Obong-Oshotse 25 September 2020
Text: Numbers 11:5 “We remember the fish we ate in Egypt that cost nothing, the cucumbers, the melons, the leeks, the onions, and the garlic.”
Wednesday last week marked the 400th anniversary of the voyage of the Mayflower from Plymouth to the United States. There were more than 100 passengers onboard the small ship, all hoping for a new life. These Puritans, later known as the Pilgrims, were leaving England because they wanted to be free to worship God. The voyage across the Atlantic was a perilous one, but they finally arrived 66 days later. The trials of the voyage would not make them discount the problems they had with worship in England, let alone relish them. And their faith was more than repaid in the freedom they found in the vastness of the land.
Not so the Israelites who had just been delivered from centuries of slavery in Egypt. They despise the manna from heaven and lust after their Egyptian diet. In the heat of rebellion, they reconstruct their Egyptian story to make it look like they were good old days. They boast that their food ‘cost nothing’. Really? So deep were they in denial that they were prepared to conveniently forget that it cost them their freedom, fundamental human rights, dignity, humanity, wives, husbands, children, and much more. The good old days are never as good as we often make them out to be.
Our trials are rather often exaggerated, and we drape the past in hues of gold to escape the present darkness.
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