I was in a conversation recently about what makes you who you are.
I guess we all wonder that at times.
I thought about myself and what made me like I am.
I know we live in a time when everyone wants to blame their upbringing for the way they are.
It is true none of us get raised without some type of emotional scars.
Our parents, no matter how much they loved us didn't do it all right, there were times they were busy and insensitive.
Times they were short with us and we may have been spanked when we didn't deserve it.
We vow to do better and in many ways we do but still we fail.
Our children will have hurts and insecurities they will be able to trace back to us.
Thankfully that's not the end of the story though.
Thankfully most of us had parents that did a lot of things right too.
We were fed and we were clothed.
We had a bed to sleep in at night.
We were sent to school and educated.
I was thinking about my childhood.
My dad worked hours and hours, he worked away all day at a public job and every night at my Grandpa's farm and his own farm.
We were Mom's career. She was a homemaker.
We didn't have a lot but I never felt poor, it was a shock to me when I learned others thought we were.
I remember having a friend home with me one day and she said, "You're poor aren't you?"
I felt uncomfortable and confused, I told her I didn't know.
Isn't that wonderful?
I didn't know.
Why didn't I know?
I didn't know because of the way I was being raised.
I was never made to feel poor and I never went with out.
Our lunches and school books were always paid for in cash by my parents.
If something was going on at school and a new outfit was needed, we had one.
If we wanted to play and instrument, one was rented.
I don't know how they did it, I know it was all they could do, but they did it.
I'm so proud of my parents, I'm so thankful for who they taught me to be.
Years went on and things got easier for mom and dad, then I married and I was poor again.
Mark and I didn't have much I once again found myself surprised and uncomfortable when I realized others saw us as poor.
I didn't feel poor.
We were paying for our place, buying our groceries and paying our bills all though it often took us a while to get them paid.
I never felt anything but blessed.
Do you remember in the Bible when the Apostle Paul said, I have learned to be content?
He said I have been in want and I have had plenty.
I feel like that is my story.
I think that is part of what made me who I am.
I have been what people considered poor but we kept at it and worked together everyday until finally we had.
I'm not saying we have lots but we have what we need.
I'm so thankful for all of it and the attitude of contentment I saw lived out before me.
I'm thankful for all the people and the experiences that have made me who I am and I'm glad God has been gracious to me and allowed me to open my eyes and realize all of it.