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  • July 11, 2014 - Reflections

    By Jean S. Horner
    The other day while walking down a corridor in a public building, I saw what appeared to be someone walking toward me. On coming closer, I found it was my own reflection in a huge mirror. For a moment it frightened me. Somehow a full-length reflection of one’s self is a startling thing. ...


Daily Boost

March 9, 2011 - Ellis Island

By Randy Mantik

Thanks to my cousin, a number of years ago I finally found a resource to research my ancestry, the Ellis Island website. I love history, and I found the history I read there to be fascinating. I started immediately to try to find my grandparents’ names who had come through this fabled door into the United States so many years ago.

At first, I could not find Grandpa Mantik’s name until my cousin finally figured out there had been a spelling error. His name had been listed as “Montuk.” I can well understand how that could have happened, having had my last name misspelled and mispronounced many times!

Eventually I found the manifest of the ship of my grandfather’s immigration. I saw the names of others with whom he traveled. I saw the listing of the town he came from and where he was going. It struck me as kind of humorous that among all of the others who were going to notable places such as Brooklyn, N.Y., Chicago and Milwaukee, there was Michael Mantik going to nondescript, wide-spot-in-the-road Athens, Wis. It seemed a little anticlimactic, especially in light of all he went through just to get to America.

Long before the move to America, his ancestors moved from Germany to Russia. His family worked hard to earn a place there, only to face the hatred of the long-term residents of the land, jealous of their success. My grandfather was very afraid as he was about to be taken into the Russian army, which had fought many ill-advised wars. He would have most likely ended up as cannon fodder, not to mention the difficulty of fighting among soldiers who resented his ancestry.

So, he found a way to sneak out under an assumed name, journeyed through continental Europe to Liverpool, England, and booked passage on the Lucania. At long last, he arrived in America. It was the opening chapter of his new life; he had made it to the land of promise!

I tell this story to help us to think about another land we can make our destination. Paul says, “But our citizenship is in heaven, and it is from there that we are expecting a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20, NRSV).

My grandfather knew what he endure on his journey was not the end. He had to be going someplace. May I put forward to you that much of the difficulty and pain we endure in our lives can fade when we discover God’s purposes and recognize how to live for Him. My grandfather had a goal, a purpose, a future to claim. We have a future and a hope as well, and it’s one of eternal proportions!

God calls for you to find your home, not here among this life, but in a life to come.

— Randy Mantik is lead pastor at CrossPoint AG in Portage, Wis.



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