Editor’s Note- This month we are reprinting an article, written by a very faithful member of Bible Baptist Church. Almost 20 years ago, I asked Mrs. Evelyn Brazee to share some of her life experiences with the readers of Far above Rubies. Her memories reveal character lessons learned and a glimpse into her childhood, which seemed to be a simpler time, however, one that had its own unique challenges!
Since the time she wrote this article, Mrs. Brazee’s husband has gone on to heaven, but she has remained faithful, still teaching the same 2-3 year old Sunday School class she began teaching over 50 years ago now! What a wealth of knowledge and practical experience she has accumulated and applied in her class! How many young lives has the Lord used her to impress with the truth from Gods word? All children have things to learn, and wise young parents will see the value of Mrs. Brazee’s objective concern for their child. Parents SHOULD be able to put their personal feelings aside and seek her out for advice or counsel from time to time. How many little ones has she had the opportunity to instill the values of respect for authority, obedience, the proper way to behave in Sunday School and other godly character traits! Believe me when I say she can “read” these little ones “like a book!” It is a special blessing to this dear lady to know that being taught to pay attention and obey in Sunday School translates into love and security for these precious little people who grow to love her! God bless you, Mrs. Brazee for being a consistent example of faithfulness for others to follow!
And to our Far Above Rubies readers: Here is a little glimpse into her background…
Some of my favorite verses…Proverbs 3:5-7 says, “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil.”
Growing up on a farm, we always had our physical needs met. Although my parents weren’t saved, they worked hard to provide for our family. My siblings and I knew there would always be money to purchase the items we needed (clothes, shoes, etc). I am thankful for the work ethic I was taught at a young age.
Most of our food was grown on the farm (meat, vegetables, and some fruit), so we only needed to buy the staple food items (sugar, flour, etc). Sometimes, it was hard for me to understand why children that I went to school with didn’t have the nice clothes or good food that we had.
Even my father, coming from a family of six children, talked about having to wear his brother’s clothes or shoes that didn’t fit properly. He told of only having bread in his lunch box, and sometimes nothing on it. The school lunches my mother packed included some kind of lunchmeat or peanut butter, and of course, she made treats like homemade jam, cake or cookies. Being the oldest, I didn’t have to wear “hand-me-downs.” My father was a very good planner and provider. He taught me to save money and not to buy something unless it was a necessity, and then, not to go into debt. My dad’s saying was, “If you don’t have the money for it, you don’t need it.”
These were very good life lessons, and I was raised to be self-sufficient. After I was saved, I had many things to learn about surrender and completely trusting the Lord. I had to learn- and admit- I could not do everything by myself, and I needed to allow the Lord to lead me. For several years, I was frustrated, and I struggled until I finally began to learn how to trust the Lord in little ways, as well as bigger ways.
For instance, I remember one particular winter, when, as a young wife, I fell and broke my wrist outside the building where I worked. I had to wear a cast for six weeks.
I found that some things, I could do with either hand, and so I concluded I could do anything! At that time, my hair was halfway down my back. Would I be able to wash it? Yes! I was determined to do it! However, I found out I was wrong. I couldn’t wash it in the shower because of the cast, and trying it in the sink was a disaster! I finally allowed my willing husband to help me, and that day I learned a valuable lesson about admitting my limitations and letting others be a blessing to me! While a stubborn streak can be a good thing to have, it can also cause problems. I needed to learn the right balance in it.
Over the years, I have had to learn many things, including patience, which was very hard for me. Growing up on a farm, I was taught that when there was a task to do, you don’t put it off. You just “do it,” whether you feel like it or not. Sometimes, even now, I find myself slipping back into that old rut of impatience, when someone doesn’t start a task I feel could be done “right now.” I have to ask the Lord to help me to focus on Him and be more patient with others. Proverbs 23:4 says, “…cease from thine own wisdom.”
Even so, it IS important to teach young children to be good workers and help others. The Bible says in Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 20:11, “Even a child is known by his doing…”
As grandparents, it is a joy for my husband and me to see our grandchildren willing to work hard and help others. How important it is to instill virtues like this when children are young.
As a child, I was trained to work, and to this day, it’s hard for me to just “lay around,” so to speak, and do nothing. Furthermore, I’m not really a vacation person. Maybe it’s because we didn’t have vacations while I was growing up, because of all the chores on the farm. Every once in a while, my husband tells me I need to relax and do nothing, or do something just for myself. It is hard for me to do because I feel I am wasting time. Relaxation for me is sewing or making Sunday School/Children’s Church stories and songs. I guess I just always feel like I need to be accomplishing something!
I once thought that as I grew older, my life would be “set,” and things would stay pretty much the same, but I can see that is not so. Life is ever changing, and always a learning process. I know there will always be areas that I need to commit to the Lord, and learn to trust Him more.
Psalm 37:5, 7 says, “Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass…Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for him…”