This Memorial Day I want to remember the sixty-six Tuskegee Airmen1 that died in battle during World War II and the remainder of that unique group of black Americans who have their rightful place among “The Greatest Generation” dying each passing year. I originally wrote this post for Black History Month as the Lord led. However, in His continuing leadership, I make this edited repost now, not only appropriately for Memorial Day, but also to acknowledge the reality of these black American men--many of whom were professing Christians--that lived not as victims, but victors as Open Door Communication Ministries, Inc. prepares to celebrate the 25th Year Anniversary of its “From Slavery To Victory Education Project”2 on Juneteenth this year.
Originally Posted February 5, 2012
February is Black History Month in America. While I concur wholeheartedly with those that contend the important history of black Americans and their contributions ought to be taught as an integral part of American History, the fact is, our nation’s educational system still has a way to go to make this a reality. Until then, it is good to continue with the educational aim of black educator Carter G. Woodson when he established a Black History observance in the third decade of the last century.
Woodson wanted blacks who were intentionally excluded from the history books produced by whites, to be able to celebrate the significant historical contributions of members of their own race and feel good about themselves. Today, we want all Americans to feel good about the historical contributions of blacks to the building of the nation. To this end, I am pleased to recommend that all Americans see the movie, Red Tails, produced by George Lucas of Star Wars fame.
The film is based on the true story of the Tuskegee Airmen--an all black fighter pilot squadron out of the famed Tuskegee Institute of Alabama that greatly contributed to the success of Allied air efforts in World War II. Positioned in Italy, in the film plot the squadron’s pilots are frustrated with the lack of opportunity to engage in air battles because racism in the Military has branded them inferior and incapable. Anxious to demonstrate their air prowess while racially belittled by white counterparts in segregated camps, the men are soon given their opportunity and the results are the stuff of legend.
Red Tails is an important look at the ugly reality of racial discrimination and segregation in American History. This is a reality that though not as overt as it once was, is still covertly practiced even in America’s churches and a reason “the race card” still has power. The well produced movie is also an examination of the purposeful and noble choice the Tuskegee Airmen made to courageously fight the enemies of and die for the nation that oppressed them like enemies. Many of these men were (are) Christians and profile the heart of the aspiring strong man of God in the image of Jesus Christ I write about in my book, The Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics.3 They shine as over comers rather than victims (1 John 5:4-5).
I do want to acknowledge my daughter, Roberta Kelley, for getting her dad involved with a “Living History Day” project under the direction of then history teacher Ken Buckles at Milwaukie High School in Milwaukie, Oregon back in 1998-99. On that occasion, we hosted one of the Tuskegee Airmen, Ed German and a later comrade, Bill Holloway who were in town for the school event. We had a great time learning about their experiences. I commend Mr. Buckles (who is white) for wanting his primarily white students to know American History as it really is: the story of a nation comprised of people from every race that have all made important contributions to its historical achievements.
1 National World War II Museum history of the Tuskegee Airmen. For more information about the Tuskegee Airmen see also http://tuskegeeairmen.org/.
2 The From Slavery To Victory Education Project uniquely presents a biblical worldview of the facts of black history to glorify God and promote healing, hope and help
for black Americans grappling with our experience.
3 My book is available at all major internet booksellers, by order at your favorite brick and mortar bookstore or in the Strong Man Store.
Joyful greetings to you on this Palm Sunday! Please receive this edited 2013 repost as a word of encouragement during this very special week for us as followers of Jesus Christ. Per usual, I will be taking Resurrection Sunday off in this current case to celebrate my 42nd spiritual birthday. The Lord saying the same, my next post will appear on Sunday, April 28th.
Originally Posted March 29, 2013
My short holiday blog for Resurrection Sunday appears today so that I may respectfully pause to honor the Lord’s triumphant work to save a wretch like me culminating in His powerful resurrection from the dead as I hope all of you will do as well.1 The Lord’s challenge to us who would be faithful in these days of open rebellion by the world against as well as spiritual confusion, adultery and apostasy among those professing to know Him, is to all the more take to heart the benedictory exhortation of the apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 6:11-16; following Christ’s example to the death as we have been called (Philippians 1:27-30; 1 Peter 2:19-23, 3:13-17).
The foregoing is the heart of every aspiring strong man and great woman of God in the image of Jesus Christ! The times we have entered into have been foreordained and told by God through the prophets, the Lord Jesus and His apostles (Mark 13:9-23; Acts 8:1-4). There is nothing we can do to reverse this present course permanently for even when the Lord does send revival to His people in days ahead, it will not be to restore the so-called “good old days” as I write in my book, the Strong Man Of God: Back To Basics.2 It will be the marking out and protection of elect Israel as well as renewing preparation for enduring “the great tribulation” by faithful saints leading up to Christ’s return (Revelation 7, NKJV).
Thus, the wicked wherever they are found fill up the cup of their sins that God in increasing severity judges until finally, He pours out on them the fullness of His wrath to crush them at Christ’s appearing (Revelation 16:17-21, 19:11-21). Meanwhile, the faithful “fight the good fight of faith” (1 Timothy 6:12, NKJV); staying in it until death or the Lord’s appearing and receive as our good end, the promised resurrection to immortality in the likeness of His own we celebrate on Resurrection Sunday (Revelation 20:4-6). A glorious Resurrection Sunday to you, indeed!
1 Read the April 3, 2016 repost the Lord gave me richly exploring the resurrection, God Raises The Dead, under the category, The Faith!
2 The book is available at all major internet booksellers, by order at your favorite brick and mortar bookstore or in the Strong Man Store.
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