May 27, 2012

History and Family...

As I rode through the lush trails of the land that once was my families stomping grounds I found myself moved by the thought that so much history lies on that very ground. History that tells the story of my Great-Great Grandma Meyers and her love for the Lord. Her hours spent on her knees praying to the God she worshiped in music and conversation. A woman who I never knew but know was a woman who I'd like to have known.

I have always had an interest in the history of my family. The stories of the homeland and the strong women who stood by their men as they worked long and hard to provide for their families by the land they were given. A life that portrayed the servant heart and the strong working hands that worked to provide for the family. The stories of the old time church meetings that were surrounded with fear of God and homes full of prayerful dinner tables. That is to me a history that I pray I never forget a history that I may, Lord will, teach my family of.

Many times in my life I wondered what it would feel like to go back into time and live the lives that make up my families heritage. To spend some time with the ladies who baked from scratch, picked the eggs for breakfast, milked the cows, and cleaned the close with a pot of water that was heated over the stove. To not know what it was like to shower daily, put on deodorant, or possibly even know what it felt like to have shaved legs or even being able to see clearly because the family didn't have enough money to get glasses. Could I really imagine what it would be like to live a life the way my family lived?

My family history on the Meyers side is so amazing to me and every time I go out that way I find myself amazed at the history and how the people in that area still try and keep it. Farmers still farm the land that there great grandparents first settled on as well as take care of the cemetery that has only a couple families represented. What a beauty to have such strong people who desire to keep the history of their town together, but what beauty to know that they still see value in the old time ways.

I've came to realize one thing and that is what a beautiful thing God did in designing man kind. His intention for us was to keep the ways that once were but the choose made by Adam and Eve started the evolution of what we see happening today. Sin and the mind of the corrupt man has tainted the things that once were intended for thankfulness into things of lesser value. The kind of things that taught hard work and appreciation, the kind of things that made man's heart grateful and in need of God.

A time when men worked to provide for their families and had scared hands to show it. Where women brought honor to their husbands and worked to nurture their children and love their husbands. A time when kids respected their elders and learned from their stories. A time when families gathered together for prayer and a time in the Word together. When Sunday was looked upon as the day of rest and even the local store closed down so that all would go to the house of worship. A time when children were children and not caused to grow up before their time. Where teachers were respected and students listened in fear they would be punished for their actions. When kids had one nice outfit to wear to church and shinned their shoes to make sure they gave their best to God.

Yes, not all places were like this and yes not all families were like this but through a time in history something took place and it wasn't for the better. I don't complain about the things that we have that they didn't then. I can go in an outhouse and not care but I don't know if I would like to do that all the time. I am not afraid of hard labor but I'm not sure if I'd like to milk a cow and pick the eggs before being able to eat. However, I also know that if I was raised that way I would know no different and maybe I'd look at life different.

I'm puzzled tonight as I write on the history and family life that we now have became acustomed to. Is it what I'd want to have for my family or will it be important to show my children the things of the past that we must not forget. The kind of things that build good Christian character and understanding, respect and value, as well as honor and morals.

I want to never forget the things that God loves and the heritage that makes me who I am. The lessons that God used to teach His people in the Old Testament are the same lessons that our families lived by. The one thing that families were built on and that was fear of God. They were built on the rock and they knew that it was God that got them through the tough times.

I want to remember the things that God wants and the things that I can learn from those who lived before me. To honor the people who fought for my freedom, to those who worked hard to provide for my loved ones, and to never forget that God was right there in the mist.