In the waning days of the Roman empire’s rule, a young 16 year old boy was kidnapped and taken to a faraway land where he was tortured with hard labor for many years.
After five years, he fortunately was able to escape. He walked 200 miles to the shore where he was able to find passage on a ship. Finally, the boy arrived back home.
As you can imagine, his family was overjoyed and shocked to see their beloved son back home again.
Looking forward to the first peaceful night’s sleep in his own bed, The boy instead found a night of turmoil and unrest. His dreams were disturbing. Some might even call them visions.
The visions continued night after night. In his nightly visits, the boy was told to go back to the land of his tormentors and to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them. Finally, with great resolve, the boy left home on his quest and returned to the land of his tormentors — Ireland.
Would he have to face the Celtic tribesman who had kidnapped him those many years ago? Would he be kidnapped again? Would he ever seen his homeland again? The boy didn’t know. All he knew was that he was a servant of the Most High God and on a mission to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Was he successful in his mission? Yes. Almost the entire population of Ireland converted to Christianity. And who was the boy to become? None other than Saint Patrick, the honored saint of the island of Ireland. Thanks for reading today.
Thomas Edison was one of the most prolific and influential inventors of all time. He changed all of our lives with inventions such as the incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, the movie camera and viewer, and the alkaline storage battery. Can you imagine what life would be like if we didn’t have these daily luxuries?
But, what does a genius like this do when tragedy strikes? Well, let’s find out. In December of 1914, a fire broke out at the Edison laboratories. Over $2 million in damages was done. The first tragedy was that there was only $238,000 of insurance on the labs. Why so little? Because the buildings were made of concrete and it was believed that the concrete made them fireproof. People also thought the Titanic was unsinkable. Now we know better.
But the biggest tragedy went beyond financial. All the projects and all the new inventions that he was working on went up in flames that night. All his notes, all is tinkering, all the projects – gone!
When Edison’s 24-year-old son Charles heard of the fire, panic struck his heart. He looked frantically for his father hoping that he was not in the laboratories when they went up in flames. He finally found his father standing quietly, calmly, and thoughtfully watching the flames engulf his dreams.
Edison looked at his son and asked if he knew where his mother was. He then said “… Bring her here. She will never see anything like this as long as she lives.”
The next morning, the 67-year-old Edison looked at the remains of his laboratories and said, “There is great value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God we can start anew.”
So, how does a champion deal with tragedy? They look forward. They look for the opportunities. They look for the good. And, they thank God for fresh starts.
*Mark Bowser is Professional Business Speaker and Author of several books including “Nehemiah on Leadership,” “Sales Success” with Zig Ziglar and Scott McKain, “Jesus, Take the Wheel,” and “Some Gave It All” with Danny Lane (endorsed by Chuck Norris)
Mark Bowser is the host of the popular podcast “Let Me Tell You a Story with Mark Bowser.” Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google, and other major podcast platforms.
Is it possible for a person to be bulletproof? Protected beyond all measure of human understanding? America’s foremost historian, David Barton, shared a story that used to be found in almost every American history text book for one hundred and fifty years. Today, most students and Americans have never heard this story.
The story takes place twenty years before the American War for Independence. George Washington was a young man of twenty-three years old when he was called to duty in the French and Indian War. The war was between the United Kingdom and France. Both sides had claimed ownership of the land around the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. A peaceful agreement couldn’t be made so war broke out between the two European powers.
The Americans joined the British side and most of the Native Americans joined with the French. At the time, George Washington was Colonel of the Virginia Militia. George Washington and one hundred of his militia joined with General Braddock to kick the French out of Fort Duquane which is now the city of Pittsburgh.
On July 9, 1755, they walked right into an ambush. The British were still about seven miles from the fort marching in the midwestern wilderness when all of sudden they began taking on fire from both sides of their path. The French and Indians shot at them from all angles: from behind trees, underneath logs, sheltered from rocks, and even from above in the top of trees.
The British were some of the world’s best and most experienced soldiers. Unfortunately, it was at European style of warfare. In that style, both armies would line up in straight lines on opposite sides of a field and bravely fire at each other.
So, in the middle of a wilderness, the British did what they had been trained to do. They lined up shoulder to shoulder neatly as if they were marching in a parade. They were easy pickings for the enemy. The Indians and French protected by their hiding places took out the British with ease. In only two hours, over 700 of the 1,300 British and Virginia Militia troops were slaughtered. Only thirty of the French and Indians had been shot.
George Washington was the only officer who was not shot off of his horse. This twenty three year old militia leader found himself in command of what was left of the British army. What should he do? Continue to fight? Washington knew what he had to do. He must save what was left of his men. Washington gathered up the remaining troops and retreated back to Fort Cumberland.
During the battle, several horses had been shot from underneath Washington. Later, Washington found four bullet holes in his jacket, but he had not been touched by one bullet. He told his family in a letter that,“By the all powerful dispensations of Providence, I have been protected beyond all human probability or expectation.” Washington knew he was protected by Almighty God. There was not a doubt in his mind about that.
Fifteen years later in 1770, George Washington and a close friend returned to those same woods where the battle had been fought. An Indian Chief heard that Washington was there and traveled far to meet with him. The Native American Chief told Washington that he had been a leader in that great battle and that he had instructed his braves to single out all the officers, including Washington. The Chief himself had shot at Washington seventeen times without success. Believing that Washington was under the protection of the Great Spirit, the Chief told his braves to quit firing on Washington.
On that day in 1770, the Chief told Washington, “I have traveled a long and weary path that I might see the young warrior of the great battle.I have come to pay homage to the man whose is the particular favorite of Heaven and who can never die in battle.”
There was a time when most American children were taught that story in school about our first President. Today, most Americans have never heard that story. A recent poll stated that only 40% of Americans have a basic knowledge of American history.That is very sad … and dangerous. Philosopher George Santayana said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
That lesson goes both directions. Today, there are ignorant cries to tear down statues in an attempt to erase part of our history. But, if we don’t remember the mistakes of the past then we are condemned to repeat them.
There is evil in parts of history. We must never repeat the sins of the past. So, we must understand history. We must understand how the Hitler of the 1930’s became the Hitler of the 1940’s and killed over eleven million Jewish people. We must understand the history of slavery and how one man, Abraham Lincoln, led the fight to end that scourge in the United States in 1863.
History is not without evil … but we must remember it. History is also filled with stories of good and we must remember them too. We must walk on the shores of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina and remember the Wright Brothers and man’s leap into a bigger world. We must remember that first shaky flight and how it shined a light onto the path that led us to Tranquility Base on July 20, 1969 where Neil Armstrong took “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” So, is it possible to be bulletproof and protected beyond all measure of human understanding? Oh yeah!
ANNOUNCING! A New Podcast Gaining Attention — Let Me Tell You A Story with Mark Bowser
Stories are everywhere! We all love them! We love them in books, at the movies, and in our favorite podcasts. But, what if a story could be — more? What if a story could change your life in a substantial, positive way? What if a story could take you to the pinnacles of success and show you how to scale life’s mountains too?
Well, that is what Let Me Tell You a Story podcast with Mark Bowser is all about. Professional Speaker & Author Mark Bowser will take you behind the scenes of some of history’s greatest feats and unknown achievements so that their stories can be a city on a hill shining like a beacon in the night inspiring us to live our best! Come join us every Monday and Thursday! Please subscribe now so that you won’t miss one exciting episode. Available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google, etc….
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Was George Washington really the first President of the United States? Are you sure?
George Washington became President of the United States in 1789, however, we won the War for Independence in 1781 to earn our freedom from Great Britain. So, what happened during all those intervening years? Were we leaderless? Did we have a functioning government in those years?
After we won the war at Yorktown, the Congress met and drafted a document called the Articles of Confederation. In essence, this was the first Constitution for the United States. And on March 1, 1781 it was ratified by all thirteen colonies making it the law and guiding principles for the infant nation.
At that time Congress elected unanimously a President of the United States. The official title was President of the United States in Congress Assembled. The man the Congress unanimously elected was John Hanson.
John Hanson served for only one year. During that pivotal year, Congress established the Treasury Department. Two other prominent establishments during the Hansen administration included the adoption of the Great Seal of the United State. This seal is still in use to this day. Another prominent accomplishment was that the fourth Thursday of every November would be a day of thanksgiving.
But, did this really make Hanson the first President of the United States? How come we didn’t learn about him in our history classes in school?
George Washington considered Hanson the first president. He addressed him in his correspondence by that title and he congratulated Hansen by saying, “I congratulate your Excellency on your appointment to fill the most important seat in the United States.”
After Hanson’s term was up, Congress elected another president. This went on until the Constitution was adopted in 1789. That is when George Washington was elected President of the United States. So, if we want to get technical about it, Washington was the eighth president, not the first.
But, it is very proper and fitting that George Washington is considered the father of our country and the first President of the United States. He is the first president under the Constitution of the United States. A document that is revered for its wisdom and rights to the people.
So, next year when we celebrate Presidents’ Day, let’s not forget Mr. Hanson and the other six forgotten presidents under the Articles of Confederation. And, let’s celebrate all of the presidents and future presidents that have helped lead the greatest nation in the history of the world. So, now you know. Thanks for reading today.
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