Every generation has knowledge of the “rich and the famous” that are admired in that particular era. However, very few people’s names are known beyond their own generation. Only a handful of great leaders or infamous despots are familiar for all ages to come.
Recognize any of these names: Owen D. Young, Pierre Laval, Hugh S. Johnson, James F. Byrnes, Mohammed Mossadegh or Harlow Curtis? You should; according to Time magazine, these are all people who have been designated as "Man of the Year" by Time, indicating they had the greatest impact in that year of all persons living on Earth. The celebrity of today is all but forgotten tomorrow. (copied).
Did you know any of these men? All lived within the last century and in their lifetimes, were very well known. Since most of us would admit we do not know or remember these, let me share a glimpse at the first three people since space is limited….
Owen D. Young was a very prominent figure in the 1920’s. He was the founder and first Chairman of the Board (1919-1929) for RCA, a subsidiary of GE. He helped to found NBC in the mid-1920’s and was a man that others promoted to be the Democratic Nominee for President in 1932 which he did not get.
Pierre Laval was the Prime Minister of France four times. He led the Vichy government and collaborated with Nazi Germany believing that the Nazi’s would prevail and be “the” world power. After World War II, he was tried and found guilty of treason and executed by a firing squad.
Hugh S. Johnson was a military man. He joined the “Brain Trust” of Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1932 to help establish the New Deal. He was instrumental in the work of the National Recovery Administration and held in high regard the Fascist model of corporatism. As a result, he was fired by FDR in 1934 for his far left views.
The Biblical writer, James, asked and answered one of life’s most important questions. “What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” (James 4:14). That seems to be a very depressing viewpoint. However, if we consider what James has stated, it is both a reality and a blessing. The truth is that our life’s impact is “only for a very short while”. To say “we are like a mist” is that “we are like the fog that appears in the morning and is gone by mid-day”. BRIEF! Fog that rolls in can be dense and very hard to navigate. About the time we can see our way through it, the sun burns it away. That is life. It can be thick and hard to figure out when we are just getting started. About the time we “figure it out”, it is over and our time of influence has ended. The good thing is that we don’t live forever “here”…just a frail “mist” in this temporal world. The good thing is that we do have a time of “influence”. The good thing is that we do gain answers to life’s “cloudiness” that we can pass along before we “pass along” to eternity. The bad news is that if we are seeking long term notoriety here, we will likely be disappointed. Only what is done for the Lord will last. The world may forget our name, but the LORD has the name of those who are His written in His book in the blood of Jesus….never to be forgotten!