We had a wonderful time on our day trip to Goliad. We went to Goliad state park and checked out Mission Espiritu Santu, which translated means, the Holy Spirit mission. It was a mission complex built by the Spaniards as they sought to introduce Christianity to the region in 1749. Further down the street is Presidio La Bahia. It is a fort that was built a few years after the mission; its goal was not only to protect the mission but to protect Spain’s colonization efforts and secure the Texas coastline. The mission and the fort are both beautiful places to visit. They both boast magnificent chapels, stunning architecture and awesome artifacts. The cathedral ceilings and the mosaic lined walls of the chapels that make for such good acoustics truly do showcase some of the highlights of the good that man can accomplish.
While taking in the sights and the sounds and contemplating all of the art and the architecture, I learned more of the story of Presidio La Bahia. I learned of the Texian Commander James Fannin and how he and his men lost the Battle of Coleto. After a lengthy time of being surrounded by the Mexican army and unable to defend their position, no longer able to tend to their wounded, they surrendered. They were taken to Presidio La Bahia and kept prisoner there until the order came from Santa Anna that they were to be executed. Three hundred and forty two men who had surrendered were executed. It ultimately proved to be the turning point in the war for Texas independence as the rallying cry now became “Remember the Alamo, Remember Goliad!”
Places of history often offer us a view of the both the heights and the depths that man can reach. We have been gifted to accomplish such artistry and architecture and yet we are also capable of such acrimony and acts of violence. As I reflected on such things today, I was reminded of the promise that we have in God’s word that we will not always have to deal with such wide swings of human emotions and behaviors. One day there will be a new heaven and a new earth we are told in Revelation 21 and we are promised in verse 4:
4 And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
What a promise…no more death, no more sorrow, no more pain and no more tears. Former things will be passed away and all things will become new. As we look forward to that day we should follow the advice of Hebrews 3:13. We must “encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called ‘Today,’ so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.” Each of us should prayerfully do our best to live with a godly perspective. We should do our best to love and forgive each other as we have been loved and forgiven. We should never forget that we have been gifted to accomplish great and beautiful things and we must not let ourselves fall prey to the dark forces that would seek to have us tear one another down rather than build one another up. Until next time stay strong in the faith.