The Messenger’s Way

Carved on the northeast corner of the Bacone College chapel is this passage from the Old Testament:

Micah, 6:8: He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good: and what doth the Lord require of thee but to do justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with thy God?”

We have found, in our world, that it is difficult indeed “to do justly,” “to love mercy,” “to walk humbly.”

The first Baptist missionaries to engage the Indians of western Oklahoma encouraged them to follow the Jesus Road. The Indians discovered, however, that the missionaries themselves struggled to keep to this road. On the northwestern corner of the Bacone chapel is this quote, from Charles Journeycake, Chief of the Delawares:

“We have been broken up and moved six times. We have been despoiled of our property. We thought when we moved across Missouri River and had paid for our home in Kansas we were safe, but in a few years the white man wanted our country. We had good farms, built comfortable houses and big barns. We had schools for our children and churches where we listened to the same gospel the white man listens to. The white man came into our country from Missouri and drove our cattle and horses away and if our people followed them they were killed. We try to forget these things but we could not forget that the white man brought us the blessed gospel, the Christian’s hope. This more than pays for all we have suffered.”

Indians, whites, and others, have found themselves joined on this same path to try to do good by one-another. Clearly, the thousands of people of Bacone College during the past 135 years have struggled to keep to the Jesus Road. But the very fact that the Bacone chapel has such inspiring words carved upon it indicates that notwithstanding the crooked paths and varying directions we take, there is one path that points the way.

About theamericanplutarch

Writer, thinker, historian.
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