I Went Searching For an Indian and Found I Was a Dutchman

I Went Searching for an Indian and Found I Was a Dutchman.
I've always been interested in history so when my Uncle Wayne gave me some information about our family roots I had to begin changing the way I've always thought about where I came from. We had always been told, "there's Indian blood in our ancestry, we just haven't been able to prove it". I have been surprised to learn that while searching for an Indian link, I found a Dutchman. Now I'm not saying there may not be some Indian blood somewhere but the prospect looks dimmer the more I find out.
I also have had some general prejudices about folks back east, especially areas like Ohio (I grew up in the Woody Hayes era and couldn't stand Ohio State). What a surprise (and God ordained I believe) to find we arrived in Ohio in the early 1800s, my ancestor fought in an Ohio Regiment in the Civil War, and came to Kansas afterwards. That, and some visits to Ohio, has adjusted my thinking.
And the other reason why-to keep communication between the far flung members of my family and encourage them to drop a note so we can keep in touch with the details of their lives. We miss too much by not being there in the day to day workings of life. So, leave a post for all of us.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Important Things From Your Old Fat Dad

This morning while the wife and the dog were still sleeping and the birds chirping, I ran across something I wrote and bound for my girls when they were still at home.  Advice from me to them.  I thought you might like it as I reread them myself.
I have no greater joy than this, to hear of my children walking in the truth.  3 John 4
When you are looking for a life's mate, make sure he exhibits these two qualities (besides being a Christian): honesty and unselfishness.  If he is a man of integrity and will serve his family's needs before his own, he is worthy of consideration.  If he's selfish and isn't honest in his dealings with others, drop him like a hot rock.  Chances are he won't get better; he has a basic flaw from his earlier years of training.  Trust God to help you find a mate but use these two items for guides.  (PS-If he asks you for sex to prove your love for him-FLEE!  He is both dishonest and selfish.
God is rarely early but always on time.
Think of money as a tool.  It is an item used to accomplish a task.  As a hammer is used to build a wall or a sweeper is used to clean a floor, so money is used to accomplish a task (like pay a bill, buy food, etc).  Don't allow it to have more importance than it should have.  Once you have a hammer or a sweeper, you have enough to accomplish the task God has given you, you have enough.  Don't let this "tool" dominate your life any more than you would let a hammer or sweeper dominate your life.  God has promised to meet our needs i.e. to provide us with the tools for any job He gives us.  Be satisfied with what you have, because if you can't you won't be satisfied with more. 1 Tim 6.6
Your reaction to any situation in life is more important than the situation itself.  Remember, God put you there.  Your reaction to the impact shows your faith.  Matt 5.39.
There is on greater calling in life for a woman than to be a wife and mother.  If God should give you a husband and children consider it a privilege to put them first and make an impact on your family.  If you have a family, they come first, before your own wants and plans.  If you bring children into the world, it is you and your husband's responsibility to take care of them.  No one else is as qualified as you to do it.  If you put your family's needs ahead of yours and invest your best in them, you will be fulfilled and have no regrets.
Don't find your happiness anywhere else but in God.  "Rejoice that your name is written in the Book of Life".  Luke 10.20.  He is your "portion"-your allotted amount.  With Him you have everything you need in life.
People are more important than programs or things.  Invest your time in people because programs and things won't last into eternity, only people and God's Word.  Don't run over people to accomplish programs or to get things done.  It can't be God's will if you have to harm others to get it done.
Don't be tempted to continually change cars to "keep up with the Jones'"  The cheapest car to have is the one you already have.
Guard your good name (Proverbs 22.1).  Always try to keep your good name pure and unsullied.  Remember you are a Bartlow.  Although there have been some through the years who have been scoundrels, by and large we are a people of honesty and integrity.  This is true a hundred-fold as a Christian.  We must do our best to never let dishonor come to the name of Jesus, the One who gave Himself for us.  Finally remember that a good name is easy to lose but hard to get back.  (Remember at family reunions we always cleaned up the place better than we found it?  This wan't to ensure the return of a deposti or the like but because it would be dishonorable to leave it dirty).
As you go out into the world, watch out for Satan.  He will mask himself as a heavenly messenger (Gal 1.8-9), an angel of light (2 Cor 13.14), a false prophet, etc.  Know God's Word and use it as a filter for your mind to protect yourself from the Evil One.
Motivation.  What is your motivation for what you do?  There are really only two: God and self.  Many people do many good things (for friends, family, etc) but their motivation is still self.  It makes them feel good.  Make you motivation to please Christ in all you do.  then when you do something good it will please Christ AND make you feel good.  Col 3.23.
Change the oil in your car at least every 5000 miles (3000 would be better).  It will save you thousands of dollars.
Rotate the tires on your car every 6000 miles.  It will save you hundreds of dollars.
Check the fluid levels in your car at least twice a month and before trips.  It will save you thousands of dollars.
Make sure the car you're driving has a spare tire and you know how to change it.
Find a good mechanic and service station.  Trade there consistently even if it costs more. It will pay off in the long run.
Keep your car garaged if possible. It will last longer that way.
Giving thanks to God honors Him.  Be sure to thank God for all the things in life, including your next breath.  By thanking God you also make a way for Him so show His salvation to you (Psalms 50.23).
Be prompt and on time for engagements.  By being late, you show disdain and disrespect for the other person.  Remember, their time is important to them also.
The story of the wise and foolish builders.  (Luke 6.40ff).  The wise one built his house on the rock-the rock of faith in Christ.  The stones in his foundation are the trials of life that build faith.  Don't consider the trials of life as 'bad" things but opportunities to trust God so that your faith is build up and you have a strong foundation that will stand when the big trials come.  James says "consider it pure joy" (Jas 1) for trials build perseverance and faith so you may be mature.  No one relishes bad times, but don't consider them negatives-God knew they were coming to you before you were born.  As Job said, "Should I accept the good from the Lord and not the bad?".
Don't be ashamed if your lot in life is "only" a wife and mother.  More lives have been affected for the good by a mother in a well-run household than all the lawyers, doctors, politicians, etc, combined.  The world doesn't need any more of the latter but could use plenty more of the former.
Be faithful to study God's Word daily.  It is the very Word of God entrusted to your care.  To not study diligently and hold it in high regard in the decisions of your life is foolish and a betrayal of the sacred trust given to you by the One who died in your place.
In your marriage, never bring up old wrongs.  Once they're discussed and forgiven, they're gone.  God did it for you-do it for your mate.
Think before you promise to do something.  It is better to not promise than to promise and not do it (Deut 23.21-23).  If you tell someone that you'll do something (including God), then do it and don't look for an easy way out of it.  God takes no pleasure in fools who don't fulfill their vows (Ecc 5.4-5).
Laugh a lot!  It's good for the bones.  God never intended our Christian lives to be a drudgery, but a joy and an adventure.  I hope you'll always remember me as laughing!
If you marry, be gentle with your husband.  After the honeymoon is over, he may not tell you he loves you as much, or may not gently touch you as much or do the little things as much.  It isn't because he doesn't care, it's because he thinks he has proven his love and doesn't need to do it again.  Gently remind him that you still need those things and do it in a way which doesn't harm his ego.  Our (males) egos are fragile and easily bruised.  Also, don't become hardened to him if he doesn't do the things you like.  Talk with him-he probably doesn't have a clue that you're unhappy or what you're unhappy about.  COMMUNICATE!  It's one of the best tools to combat Satan's attempts to separate you.
Although I have tried to be a good father, and much of what you think about your relationship to God as father you get from your relationship with me, remember that God is the perfect Father.  Where I have failed, He will not.  He will always do what is best for you. Matt 7.9-11.
One final thing.  Where ever you go in the world, if you make mistakes (and you will), remember there is always forgiveness and restoration at home.  At our home, and at God's (1 John 1.9).

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