Scripture:  2 Chronicles 15:7

"..............be strong and do not give up..."

A good friend of mine is a historian and shared this piece of history with me. John Berry Meachum was born a slave May 3, 1789 in Goochland County, Virginia. His owner, Paul Meachum, moved Meachum to North Carolina and then Kentucky where Meachum learned several trades and met his future wife, Mary. By the time he was 21, he had earned enough money to purchase his freedom and, soon after, the freedom of his father. In 1815, before Meachum had earned enough funds to purchase his wife's freedom, she was moved to St. Louis. He followed her there and then purchased her freedom with his earnings. 

He was ordained a minister in 1825 and officially opened the First African Baptist Church. He began offering education to free and enslaved blacks in St. Louis. Although white Missourians originally supported schooling for blacks to strengthen Christianity, racial tensions caused them to now see educated blacks as a threat to slavery. Around the time Meachum opened his school, St. Louis banned education of blacks forcing Meachum to temporarily close the school. Determined not to give up, Meachum equipped a steamboat with a library, desks, and chairs and opened the "Floating Freedom School" on the Mississippi River. Students would board the boat; escape the reach of Missouri officials to be taught by Meachum at the Floating Freedom School.

"Obstacles don't have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it." Don't give up.