Thought For Today

I am so glad that you have found this site and I hope you will find encouragement and joy as you read through my thoughts on God, family and life.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Family Stories

I recently received a forward from my mother-in-law about a family (Duggan Family) who had many brothers and sisters growing up during the Great Depression.  The story of their family was comical, sad, joyful and very real.  I can’t tell you how much I enjoyed reading their story.  Everything from their father having a car given to them to transport their large family, and not having the money to register it (and so they could not drive it,) to that of their dad getting a farm and not knowing how work the farm.  The son related that if someone had followed his dad’s method of farming and they did the direct opposite, they would have a good chance at succeeding at becoming a good farmer.  I recall one instance when they raised their animals for the family to eat,  when it came time to killing them, no one could do it since everyone had grown to attached to each of the animals. 

My family:  Anne, Abby, Will and myself.
When telling Anne about their story she was amused and very touched by their life story as a family.  I mentioned what the author said about the fact that we don’t as a nation tell our family stories to our children and grandchildren anymore.  He had said that a great heritage is lost when this happens.  Anne responded by saying that in working with young adults today, she hears stories from them about movies and T.V. drama rather than about family.  I believe when this happens we lose more than history, we have lost our individual heritage.  As a family each of us are formed by what has happened growing up within our individual families.  When sharing these stories with our children, we not only pass on our history to them, we also share with them our high points and that of our not so shining aspects of our family as well.  These need to be told so that the pride of our past can live on and mistakes are not repeated in the next generation. These are lessons that build and support each of us today. 

We as humans are fragile and are prone to making mistakes, but we need to learn to laugh at our weaknesses in order to see ourselves in a realistic light.  Weakness’ and strengths are what make who we are and that of our family as well.  In education the common phrase today is, “Standing on the shoulders of those that have gone on before us.”  Better or for worse, our family is the substance of who we are.  When telling these stories, we are given a sense of our identity and the chance to pass that on to the next generation as well.  By sharing our family history, we inform, enlighten, and encourage the next generation to be more than what we are, (I believe that to be every parent's desire.)

What is your story?  Feel free to leave any family antidotes, or stories of interest in the comments section below that you feel would add to our lives, and make each of us a little richer by knowing something of your family past.  I personally would love to hear from each of my readers, no matter what region, state, or country you are from.  You do not have convey your name if you do not want to, but please share any family story if you would like.   I am sure we all would be encouraged to hear about something from your family, whether it is funny, sad, or even insightful. 

Thank you for reading about my family.

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