Benton First UMC Blog

Grace Note for September 15, 2015

Hello, I'm David Russell and this is a GRACE NOTE.

Tradition. No one would question that tradition is an influential factor upon any social setting, but to claim that it is the glue which binds a community or area together is questionable. Especially since some of our revered traditions are considerably distorted in the first place. For example, we in the South have a tradition of enjoying an emotional involvement with the song, “Dixie.” Many in the South regard it as “our song,” or a kind of regional anthem. To sing of cotton and frosty mornings and living and dying for Dixie stirs up emotions which transport the mind back to an antebellum, magnolia shaded, honeysuckle scented nostalgia-plated era. How easy it is to picture in one's mind a pensive romantic sitting on a long ago veranda, peering across dew-covered gardenias and endless rows of cotton, lovingly writing down the words to “Dixie.”

There is only one thing wrong with all that. It just isn't so. The song was written in 1854 by a man named Emmett, a member of a minstrel company. It was written as a “walk around” number to allow characters to change positions on stage and was first performed in New York City.

What are your traditions? Do you know the real story behind them? Are you living your life patterned after false ideals and erroneous thoughts?

“Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was[a] in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God as something to be exploited, but emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.” Philippians 2:4-7


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