Here is a picture of my dad's family taken in 1919. My dad is the little boy standing between his parents.
I love looking at the clothes and imagining the lifestyle at that time. I love the fact that I can look at the older kids, standing in the back, and SEE my aunts and uncles. I was blessed to actually get to know them. But what ALWAYS goes through my mind, is my grandmother. Both my grandmother and grandfather came to America from Sweden as "indentured servants". They were young teenagers at the time and they left everything and everyone that they knew to come to a strange country. I just can't imagine that. And then they worked hard, as servants, for other people - as farm hands and maids, childcare workers and cooks. They met in Minnesota while working on neighboring farms. My grandfather served out the remaining time on my grandmother's indentured contract so that they could get married. Eventually, my grandfather purchased his own farm and they raised their children. As you can see by the picture, there is a large age spacing between my dad and his oldest brother (standing behind his father). Actually 20 years. What tugs at my heart about this picture, is who is MISSING from this picture. This family includes two more boys. In the summer of 1913, Algot, who was 18 at the time, fell out of a hay loft onto a pitchfork and died of gangrene infection. Also, Gustov, who was 6 years old, died of "sugar disease". And then on August 20, 1913, my dad was born. Can you imagine that? Losing two of your children and then having a new baby - all in one summer? And did I mention that my grandmother was 41 years old?
It has always been in my heart that neither of these boys -my two uncles - would have died if the same scenario played out in my lifetime. We take for granted doctors and hospitals and antibiotics as well as other amazing medical advances like insulin. But it was not that long ago that these "miracles" were not available. I've been thinking about a video I saw on the internet the other day watch it here. It is a story about a 15 year old boy, Jack Andraka, that invented a way to detect pancreatic cancer for only 3 cents. Amazing. I can't help but think of all the other miraculous things, yet to be discovered, that Yahweh has gifted to people.
I am convinced that there are amazing, creative inventions and solutions on the horizon. Yahweh's kingdom is ever increasing and His glory is being revealed through His people. I am also convinced that my children and grandchildren will have a part in bringing about these miracles. It gives me a hope and excitement for what is ahead. And it gives me great joy.
Thank you Yahweh for helping me to see your hand in the many miracles we see today. Thank you for my family and the way that you have gifted and used all the generations. Yahweh, I pray special blessing on my entire extended family. May they draw close to you and hear your voice. Thank you for your great love and the gift of Jesus. Amen