This week holds all things red, white, and blue. Cookouts. Flags. Fireworks. Parades. Marching bands. Watermelon. John Phillip Sousa. The Star-Spangled Banner. Picnics.
I can’t help reflecting on our country; Native Americans, Immigrants, Forefathers, George Washington, Abe Lincoln, Pocahontas, etc.. Perhaps, because most of my Fourth of July celebrations have been in or around Washington, D.C. Also, this sign sits across the street.
A few years ago, we traveled up through the state of Wyoming, from bottom to top. Beyond gorgeous. We drove up through the flat prairies flanked on both sides by peaks and ridges where the Oregon Trail once crossed.
Mesmerized, looking out the passenger window, I tried to picture the wagon trains crossing the eastern massive rocky mountains. I envisioned westward settlers coming down the slopes, pitching camp and resting; oh I’d say, for a month or two. (A 21st century guess, based on the size of the mountain they just labored over. *wink*)
I cannot imagine getting over the eastern mountain range and having any stamina or fortitude to travel on, without resting up for a “good-long-pause”. I’ve watched a few westerns, wagon train, pioneer, “moving west” movies. You know…. campfires, harmonicas, cooking in a cast-iron pot, sitting on logs, woman way over dressed-for-walking-across-the-country, threatening wild animals, meager rations, scarce water, etc. These travelers deserved a nice long “circle-up”.
How In The World?
Can you imagine, lugging animals, wagons, adults, children, supplies over those huge edifices, whose expanses took weeks to traverse? I can tell you the movies make it look simple compared to an up-close-in-person perspective. My knees buckled peering at the landscape. Logic screamed, “Couldn’t they have found an easier route or gone around the mountains?” But, No! We learned, they went right over the mountains, making pulleys/hoists … pulling wagons over when the cliffs were too steep. Animals and people crossed by foot. Oh my heavens, why didn’t it occur to them, “This is impossible!” Any realists in the group? (I suppose, they stayed home.)
“AND THEN, guess what loomed to our west? ANOTHER MOUNTAIN! “
Are you kidding me?
They trudged one mountain to exhaustion, death of people and animals, disease, ill weather, got to decent flat land to set up camp. What stood in front of them? Another mountain to climb!! I emphasized to my husband, “I would have laid-down right here and died!!! Willingly.” Not even kidding! I value discovery and an adventurous spirit, but a real-life American pioneer, resembles a death sentence. Truly.
It occurred to me, these people possessed a Genetic make-up that has either altered, corrupted or diminished with later generations! Hard as I may wish to muster that kind of spirit, I can’t find it in me. God knew I wouldn’t have survived, nor been any use to Him in those generations. He chose me for the 20th & 21st century, seeing my need for air conditioning. And, a few other creature comforts. I love Him!
“I believe God orders our days with purpose.
He has placed us in history with forethought and planning.
Other centuries were meant for others.
He has equipped us to deal with this one.”
(Ecclesiastes 3:2, Acts 17:26)
What do you ponder on July 4th?
Thanking God I was “Born in the USA” … in the 20th century,
4 thoughts on “Nope. Not Me!”
Ms. Elaine I’m so humbled reading your blogs! Thank you for doing these and inspiring others with what God had laid on your heart to share! I love you and Mr Jim as you were like second parents to me!
Jessica, thank you for meeting me here. It is a joy to share with you. It has been our pleasure watching you grow up!! Love you too!!
Elaine, thanks for your writing! My sister lives in WY & visiting her I have been out on the prairie, standing in the ruts from the wagons on the Oregon Trail. And wondering, how did they do it? Your words remind me of being there, hearing the wind & thinking about the stamina of these Americans.
It is a powerful experience! They indeed had fortitude and resolve, quite a testimony! Thanks for sharing!
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