By Effie Rolfe
There’s nothing new under the sun—this is hard to believe. However, it’s an age old truth that has unbelievably withstood the test of time. Perhaps, you’ve probably said it before—heard it or even written those very words. If your answer is yes, I wouldn’t be surprised. The wisest man in the bible, King Solomon said, “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9). Just because it hasn’t been heard doesn’t mean it’s not been said. Although it’s not on your radar, in no wise means it’s not a part of someone else’s repertoire. So it is with love or the lack thereof. It is difficult for me to imagine that someone could be so callous hearted and blinded by hatred or jealousy resulting in a loss of life. Several news reports over the past few weeks would cause most to think ‘what is happening?’ These back to back stories sound more like fiction or an adventure action flick.
Like 25-year-old Jessica Hampton being bullied and then stabbed to death by Arthur Jones. According to reports, the family members said he was obsessed with the single mother who was trying to get her life back on track. Witnesses saw Jones stab this woman and finally slit her throat in broad daylight on the CTA on Chicago’s South Side. If that wasn’t enough to make your soul weep, you may have heard the story of the mother in Texas that shot and killed her two daughters. Supposedly, she was upset because her husband wanted a divorce and didn’t apologize. She knew how crazy he was about his daughters and later called a family meeting and killed them in front of him to make him suffer. Personally, coming from the countryside in rural Arkansas, these stories are almost incredulous for me to believe or conceive. Yet it’s true. I still have to ask ‘has something like this ever happened in this world before?’ Surely this is a scripture that we are not to take literally. Then there was Alton Sterling killed while selling CDs in Louisiana, Philando Castile shot after being pulled over for a broke taillight and the next morning an African American male was found hanging from a tree in an Atlanta park that many considered a modern day lynching. However, authority cited no foul play and reported it as a suicide. Really…? This is too much! Lastly, Dallas police targeted during a peace rally leaving 11 wounded and five dead. Whew, this is enough to make you wanna’ run away and hide. Just thinking about these stories makes my heart cry as we live in a world that seems hopeless and devoid of love.
‘There is nothing new under the sun.’ Surely, this couldn’t be right? Could crimes so cold and vicious really have happened before? Growing up in Arkansas, I vividly recall a mother in the church saying, “I know the bible is right—somebody’s wrong!”
It’s hard to believe but maybe it’s really true. Plus, with social media—nowadays news travels around the world almost as fast as light causing us to be bombarded more than often. On the other hand, while there may be questions about what happened, one scripture I don’t have a doubt in my mind is Matthew 24:12 “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold…” Perhaps modern vernacular would describe the aforementioned crimes as acts totally devoid of love. Surely this lack of love, history and our sin nature makes these crimes so easy to commit.
A few years ago, I had a conversation with Donald Lawrence regarding a song he wrote and produced for Karen Clark Sheard entitled, “We Acknowledge You.” The first few notes of that song sounded like the “Best of My Love” by the Emotions. I told him…wow…that song sounds like one of my favorite back in the day songs by the Emotions. Then Donald looked at me as if to say ‘exactly what are you saying…’ I smiled and belabored the point and boldly asked him, ‘Did you sample that song when you were writing that song for Karen?’ Then Donald looked at me with a serious look and said ‘there’s only so many notes in a bar…so at some point you are going to hear sounds or songs that repeat—or sound alike.’ My immediate thought was ‘ok, that makes sense!’ Sooner or later something you have heard, seen or read is going to resurface. The message in this is that regardless of whether you have seen it or not—the lesson is to glean the truth from it and in it. Lastly, my mom used to always say, ‘there are worlds of stuff you don’t know.’ Our eyes will never see it all—our ears will never hear it all—your mouth will not be able to say it all, neither will your hands be able to do it all.
The circle of life exists because of divine circulation. The first will be last and the last will be first. Isn’t that just like life to teach us to see something new in something old?
What do you see—someone has probably seen it before…?
© Effie Rolfe is an Author of “Supersize Your Thinking,” Media Personality and Motivational Speaker. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Listen to her show daily on urbanpraiseradio.org (2015 Stellar Award Winner for Best Internet Radio Station).