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Up until 1910, 90% of African Americans lived in the south. Then the Great Migration came when many African Americans moved north to find jobs and to escape southern segregation. By 1970, only 53% lived in the south. Now, a reverse migration is taking place. Large numbers of African Americans are returning to the south. Surveys show they are going back because the cost of living is less; they consider the quality of life better; and they like the weather. Yet recent transplants caution that life in the South may not be the panacea many expect. Some say those who think racism and prejudice have gone away are in for a shock!” A parallel to this reverse migration occurred in 539 B.C. That was when ancient Israel returned to their homeland after 70 years of exile in Babylon. They were going home to rebuild their country. It was an exciting time. Yet not everyone chose to go back. Many who chose to stay in Babylon made donations to assist those who went. The people who went back wanted to rebuild their country and their Temple. The building projects would give them a sense of identity and nationhood. Unity and cooperative teamwork are still key elements in accomplishing important tasks. That’s true for families, churches, and for communities.

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