“…in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.”
You can’t help but be inspired by her. Anne Frank was an amazing girl and wrote some very quotable things.
“I must uphold my ideals, for perhaps the time will come when I shall be able to carry them out.”
“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
Born in 1929, the young girl of the Holocaust penned her thoughts into her diary while secreted away with her family in a home in Amsterdam. This April 14th commemorated the 70th anniversary of her death at age 15 in the Bergen-Belson Nazi concentration camp.
Wise beyond her years and full of hope in a hopeless situations, she provides us, even today with the knowledge that people can find light in the darkest night.
But Anne was a girl, not a prophet. She was writing a diary, not holy writ. And as beautiful and wise as many of her thoughts were, one of her most quoted was, well…
I don’t fault Anne. Plenty 14-year-olds don’t get much further than “OMG – did you see him?!!”
It is more about the adults who desperately want to grasp on to this message of everyone being basically good, who really want to believe that everyone, deep inside is just like a giant Tootsie Roll Pop, sweet and chewy at the core.
Actually, Anne also penned the following far more accurate statement but it doesn’t look nearly as nice on a coffee cup.
There is an urge and rage in people to destroy, to kill, to murder, and until all mankind, without exception, undergoes a great change, wars will be waged, everything that has been built up, cultivated and grown, will be destroyed and disfigured, after which mankind will have to begin all over again.
Anne knew that Hitler and his armies were not enough to spread evil. Otherwise, it would have been stopped.
We like to think that we are better than that.
“If I had lived in Germany then…”
Really? Why do we think we are impervious to the indoctrination of falsehoods through empty rhetoric by an entrancing individual?
“I never would have done what they did!”
Really? Do we really think that Hermann Goering decided as a small child that he wanted to build concentration camps when he grew up? Or that a four-year-old Heinrich Himmler planned to wipe out an entire race of people?
These men were evil. And in a way that you and I cannot imagine, they gave in to the bloodlust within and allowed it to consume them.
(and this is really ugly)
as much as I don’t want to think so, every man, woman and child alive has the potential for being another Himmler, Goering or Hitler.
(and this is even uglier)
not a single one of us is one bit better than they were.
This literally make me want to puke.
I’m not them. I’m Anne. Sunny, optimistic, good in the face of all that’s bad.
Jeremiah 17:9 says, “The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly perverse and corrupt and severely, mortally sick! Who can know it [perceive, understand, be acquainted with his own heart and mind]?”
And just in case we argue that it is entirely the fault of our environment, Jesus said, “For from within, [that is] out of the hearts of men, come
base and wicked thoughts,
coveting (a greedy desire to have more wealth),
dangerous and destructive wickedness,
unrestrained (indecent conduct);
evil eye (envy),
slander (evil speaking, malicious misrepresentation, abusiveness)
pride (the sin of an uplifted heart against God and man),
foolishness (folly, lack of sense, recklessness, thoughtlessness).
All these evil [purposes and desires] come from within, and they make the man unclean and render him unhallowed.” (Mark 7:21-23)
Oh yeah, lovely. Nothing like an Angela mirror with a really nasty reflection staring back. With Hitler and his cronies looking over my shoulder.
And this is one case where you want to look in the mirror and see a big but…
That nastiness is not what God sees.
You, if you have asked for His forgiveness, you are righteous.
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23 NKJV)
You, me, Hitler and Anne.
But every single one of us has the opportunity to be “justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” (Romans 3:24)
I’ve got to requote that last part from the Amplified version:
and made upright
and in right standing with God,
freely and gratuitously by His grace (His unmerited favor and mercy),
through the redemption which is [provided] in Christ Jesus.”
There’s a beautiful phrase to take with you.
People really aren’t good at heart. We are nasty, foul creatures. Every one of us.
But with the power of the redeeming blood of Jesus and through His gratuitous grace, He declares His children pure to the core.
Like a holy Tootsie Roll Pop.