Many, many years ago my ancestors boarded a boat and left their country to sail to America. The only home and family they knew were left behind in Germany. They had faith that the ship would stay afloat and carry them safely to a land they knew absolutely nothing about. Upon arrival in America they had faith that somehow they could survive, that someone would help them get started, that they would find a way to have a roof over their heads, food to eat and a better life.
Eventually they knew that they needed to find an area that they could homestead and call their own. They set out with an ox cart filled with their meager belongings, a cow and the faith that they would find the place that was right for them to make a home and raise a family. The spot was found, a log cabin was built. They set about clearing the land, planting what they could to help feed both livestock and the family. They had faith that they could survive, be successful and establish a way to support the family. They would clear the land, plant crops, get livestock and become farmers. They had faith that they and those living around them could come together to establish a community with a church, school and the necessary businesses. They had faith that in spite of the difficult times they could live a pleasant and happy life.
Years later another generation would purchase the farm and they would start a dairy farm. There were new ideas about how to plant and raise better crops, new machinery being invented and better ideas about how to raise and care for livestock. They had faith that they could learn, work hard, succeed and make a profit. They wanted to improve the dairy herd and they put their faith in registered Holsteins as the way to help them do that. Every farmer, no matter what type of farming he or she chooses, has faith that Mother Nature will treat them well, that they will have a good year and enjoy their family life.
My life and the lives of my ancestors were built on faith. It began many years ago as my ancestors boarded a boat and headed into the unknown. Faith was the one thing they were sure they could take with them. That faith was passed on from generation to generation to aid them in navigating the ups and down of their lives. This is a time when, just like our ancestors, we must keep faith in our lives.
We are bombarded every day with the news about this country’s problems and the COVID-19 virus. We cannot live our daily lives in the normal fashion we are used to. Just like our ancestors years and years ago as they boarded that boat, we do not know what lies ahead of us. Every generation has had their difficult problems to deal with….pain, suffering, loss, grief, disappointment, failures, and much more. Without their strong faith that things would go well and they would succeed, we would not be here today! Just like them we must take our lives a day at a time and have faith that better days lay ahead for us. Let your faith be bigger than your fear.
Barb Lumley wrote this column to be published in The Circleville Herald. The views of this column may not necessarily reflect that of the newspaper.