We Are 70! [The Rebirth of a Nation]?

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, YOU’RE 70!

All of a sudden we discover that we are 70! (summer 2017-2018)

70 years since the birth of the NHS

70 years since Israel was declared a state in 1948

70 years since Empire Windrush

70 years since Queen Elizabeth married Prince Philip

70 years since the Independence of India and Pakistan from the British Empire

These are all reasonably significant birthdays!

 

EMPIRE WINDRUSH

70 Years ago the iconic Windrush arrived carrying passengers from the Caribbean. As British Citizens from a far-flung corner of the Empire, they came to help rebuild the mother country devastated by World War II, taking prominent roles in industries such as British Rail, the NHS and public transport. The name Windrush has become shorthand for West Indian migration and British Caribbean people who came to the UK in the period after the war are often referred to as the Windrush Generation. The arrival of this generation has been an important landmark in the history of Britain’s modern multicultural society.

It’s interesting that the Windrush Scandal has arisen in the year that marks the 70th anniversary (almost as if on cue)! The British Home Office has threatened Commonwealth immigrants who arrived before 1973 with deportation if they could not prove their right to remain in the UK. As a result people have been wrongly detained, denied legal rights and threatened with deportation. A lovely birthday present!

 

THE NHS 

The National Health Service, built with the aid of the Windrush Generation, also turns 70 at this time. Founded by Nye Bevan who said the NHS was to be the ‘envy of the world’ as ‘For the first time hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians and dentists were brought together under one umbrella to provide services for free at the point of delivery.’

After 70 years, many suggest that something needs to change with the NHS service. Some say it needs to be better funded (‘since 2010 it has had 8 years of gross underfunding and has thus deteriorated’) whilst others say that it needs radical structural change; less public spending and instead more private providers brought in to manage it more efficiently as it ‘constantly underperforms.’

Is the NHS the worlds best healthcare system? Or is it an overly-taxing, heavily centralised bureaucratic relic of the past?

 

QUEEN, PRINCE AND THE COMMONWEALTH

The Queen and Prince not long ago celebrated their 70th wedding anniversary at Westminster Abbey. Elizabeth II is the first British monarch to celebrate a platinum wedding anniversary. She just 21 on her wedding day and is now the nations longest reigning sovereign, while Prince Philip is the longest serving consort in British history. Philip retired from his public role in summer of 2017, but well into their 90’s- it’s clear that they will both soon pass from the scene…what will happen next as a result and what will become of the Commonwealth of Nations (the British Empire)?

 

INDIA AND PAKISTAN

India and Pakistan recently celebrated 70 years of independence from the British Empire. The struggle that won India its freedom from the British was conducted in the name of non-violence, the central pillar of the philosophy of Gandhi.

 

WHY 70 YEARS MATTERS

Over 2,500 years ago, the people of Israel were removed from their nation and taken to Babylon for what became 70 years of captivity to the Empire of the day! God promised through the Jewish prophet Jeremiah that after 70 years of captivity a remnant would return to Jerusalem to rebuild the nation. As the 70th year approached, the Jewish prophet Daniel, who served in the Babylonian Government as a chief adviser, recalled the prophecies of Jeremiah and petitioned God in prayer for the fulfilment of those promises. The promise of God was this: ‘You will be in Babylon for seventy years. But then I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. For I know the plans I have for you, they are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.’ As a result Cyrus, the new Persian emperor, issued a decree releasing finance and permitting exiled Jews to return back to rebuild Jerusalem and their nation.

 

A REPAIR OR A WHOLE NEW VEHICLE

I wrote this article unexpectedly. My car broke down (again!). I took it in to the garage as it was overheating and whilst waiting began thinking about this article, they fixed the fan/cooling system and charged me £50, yet the next day, there was still something wrong. I took it back to the garage and wrote this article whilst waiting. It turns out the exhaust snapped, so they’ve welded it back together and charged another £20. For a total of £70.

‘We are 70’ cost me £70 to write!

In Britain, do we need a repair or do we need something brand new?

[If you’ve enjoyed this article, you may also enjoy our book Kingdom Mission]

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