Adversity is key


The American Miracle – Divine Providence in the Rise of the Republic

By Michael Medved


If you like history, you should read this book. If you believe in miracles, you should read this book. If you wonder about Divine intervention, you should read this book. If you want relief from the fake news and political mud wrestling on the nightly news, turn off the TV and read this book.

Michael Medved is a long-time talk radio host, movie critic and author of 10 books. In this latest and greatest effort, Medved proves, among other things, that he is a master storyteller.

The book’s thesis, as the title suggests, is the omniscient presence of God’s hand in the early course of American history. To make his case, Medved offers 12 compelling stories from the time of the Pilgrims all the way to the Civil War. In addition to famous presidents, statesmen and generals, the reader is introduced to a colorful array of characters; who, despite being lesser known, play critical roles at hinge points in American history. Two examples: Somerset and Squanto - the first Indians to confront the Pilgrims with a salutation in English, “Welcome Englishmen!” and followed up by the question, “Do you have beer?” And there’s Nicholas Trist - an obscure bureaucrat left on his own to negotiate the peace treaty with Mexico in 1848. At stake was nothing less than the California territory. These insightful incidents make The American Miracle a treasure trove of fascinating vignettes that will inform and inspire.


A common thread through all the stories is adversity. Not the 21st century adversity of microaggressions and offensive words that have universities providing safe spaces for offended students. The adversity in The American Miracle is of the Old Testament variety – cauldrons of blood, steel, fire and brimstone. The type of adversity that takes seemingly ordinary flawed men like Abe Lincoln, Andy Jackson, Sam Houston and Davy Crockett and turns them into the giants of their time. Was there a higher power at work? Read the book and decide for yourself.

Ashby Foote is a Northsider.

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