· September 1620 the Mayflower left England
o Varying reports detail 102 passengers plus a crew of between 25 and 30 men bringing the total number to about 130 people.
o 65/66 days of sailing to reach the upper New England coast of the Americas
o The voyage met with rough seas which cracked a main support beam. It was temporarily but satisfactorily repaired with a passenger’s “jackscrew” which had been brought aboard as cargo to help in building homes in the new world.
o On the seas 1 passenger and 1 crewman died. Another man was swept overboard but caught a trailing rope and was drawn back aboard.
· The winter of 1620/21 was harsh for the Plymouth colonists and by the spring of 1621 only about half had survived the rest having died from the cold and lack of provisions.
· In March 1621 things begin to look up when a Native American Indian walked into the settlement, made friends and began helping these new immigrants.
· The first traditional New England Thanksgiving was held in the fall of 1621. It was not about any one moment but rather about all the steps it took to bring about the hope and vision of those who had joined their lives together for one common cause.
Today we still connect ourselves to these Pilgrims and their brave adventure. Our nation, our world and indeed even our very lives have all been shaped, guided and blessed by the decisions of generations who have pledged their lives to discover their purpose and pursue their destiny.
Life is a long game. From conception to birth and from the beginning unto the end, life is joined to life and life takes time. Life is a long game. Moments are meaningful but life is about more than any one moment.
(Note: Read from Matthew 1:1-18 connecting the people and life stories.)
Matthew 1 NKJV
1 The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the Son of David, the Son of Abraham:
2 Abraham begot Isaac, Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers.
3 Judah begot Perez and Zerah by Tamar, Perez begot Hezron, and Hezron begot Ram.
4 Ram begot Amminadab, Amminadab begot Nahshon, and Nahshon begot Salmon.
5 Salmon begot Boaz by Rahab, Boaz begot Obed by Ruth, Obed begot Jesse,
6 and Jesse begot David the king. David the king begot Solomon by her who had been the wife of Uriah.
7 Solomon begot Rehoboam, Rehoboam begot Abijah, and Abijah begot Asa.
8 Asa begot Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat begot Joram, and Joram begot Uzziah.
9 Uzziah begot Jotham, Jotham begot Ahaz, and Ahaz begot Hezekiah.
10 Hezekiah begot Manasseh, Manasseh begot Amon, and Amon begot Josiah.
11 Josiah begot Jeconiah and his brothers about the time they were carried away to Babylon.
12 And after they were brought to Babylon, Jeconiah begot Shealtiel, and Shealtiel begot Zerubbabel.
13 Zerubbabel begot Abiud, Abiud begot Eliakim, and Eliakim begot Azor.
14 Azor begot Zadok, Zadok begot Achim, and Achim begot Eliud.
15 Eliud begot Eleazar, Eleazar begot Matthan, and Matthan begot Jacob.
16 And Jacob begot Joseph the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus who is called Christ.
17 So all the generations from Abraham to David are fourteen generations, from David until the captivity in Babylon are fourteen generations, and from the captivity in Babylon until the Christ are fourteen generations.
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.
Once again, life is a long game filled with so much long game potential.
It is imperative that we recognize those things in life such as family, education and career as long games. We can ill afford to play a long game with a short game strategy. When we allow single moments to make our decisions or overshadow our lives we run the risk of missing all the potential life has to offer.
Have you ever had the temptation to see your whole life in light of only one moment or allow a single moment to paint your whole future? Some people are more prone to look at life in light of their current moment. If the moment is good, life is good … if their current moment is terrible, they feel like their whole life is terrible. Not to say problems aren’t formidable however: Emotional snapshots are poor indicators of the potential hidden in the problem.
With God’s help you can take your thoughts captive in any moment and cast down the imaginations which lead many people to temporarily despair. Young David of the Bible often spoke to himself and steadied his heart, calmed his mind and encouraged himself in the Lord. (1 Samuel 30:6)
Psalms 42:11 Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.
We must have and maintain the passion emotion affords however we must also hold fast to the purpose for which we are called and for which we have entered into this race of life. Believe me when I repeat: God has a plan!
The Pilgrims met with such difficulties and disappointments they could have easily given up and felt their efforts and the lives they lost were all for nothing. However, history tells another story … it’s the same story told throughout the Bible and is epitomized by the truth we find in:
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
God has a Plan - Life connects to Life with Purpose – Play the Long Game