SolitaryRoad.com

Website owner:  James Miller


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About myself

                                                            



   I am a Christian.  A serious Christian.  I repented of the way 
   of sin and darkness and turned to God and the "Way of Light and 
   Life" that is found in Jesus Christ in a Baptist revival 
   meeting at the age of nine.  As the Baptists would say, I was 
   "saved", I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior, I gave 
   my heart to Christ.  And I was serious about my decision.  I 
   spent a lot of time during my childhood reading the Bible and 
   read it through from beginning to end.  I spent a lot of time 
   in the gospels and the epistles.  The New Life spoken of there 
   was my life.  I was determined to be a true Christian, not a 
   sham Christian.   I have never uttered a curse word or profane, 
   vulgar, obscene or four letter word in my life.  Never.  Not 
   ever.  And I have never been tempted to do it.  Why?  I am a 
   Christian.  A born-again Christian.  Underneath it all is an 
   allegiance.  An allegiance going back to my conversion.  An 
   allegiance to that Most High God and to the way of Decency, 
   Righteousness and Goodness that he stands for.  I am a 
   teetotaler and have always been one.  I have never touched 
   either alcohol or tobacco.  Why?  The same reason.  And, of 
   course, I have never even considered trying any drugs.  That 
   would be really far out.  I can't imagine myself being that 
   dumb.  I neither dance nor gamble.  I swore off watching 
   television when I was in my early twenties and rarely watch it 
   now.  Movies?  It has been many, many years since I have been 
   to a movie.  I went to a few in my youth.  After getting up and 
   walking out of some in disgust I gave up on them.  Underneath 
   it all is a knowledge of right and wrong that goes back to 
   childhood and a commitment to the Way of Right, the way of 
   decency, integrity, goodness and morality that is part of being 
   a Christian.

   Struggle?  Temptations?  The ridicule of the crowd?  The 
   difficulty of walking a lonely path?  They were all there.  
   They are part of the Christian life. 

   My background?  I was raised in the country, on a dairy farm.  
   My raising was very strict -- we children were taught strict 
   and unquestioning obedience -- and physical discipline was 
   used.  My father was a very hard worker who farmed as well as 
   working a regular job.  He grew up during the depression years 
   and that left a strong stamp on his outlook and character.  I 
   never saw him smoke, drink, gamble, swear, or use any kind of 
   bad or low language.  My mother was a good, decent, caring 
   Christian mother.  She was raised on a farm.  I thank God for 
   her.  She made sure we children went to church.  We went to a 
   small Baptist church in a nearby village.  We went twice on 
   Sunday --- to Sunday school and the main service in the 
   morning and then the 7 PM  service in the evening.  We also 
   often went to the Thursday evening prayer service.

   I was raised on hard farm work.  Father worked hard and he 
   expected his children to work hard, too.  I believe he started 
   me out working at the age of about 6 or 7.  I was the oldest of 
   three children. I had a younger brother and a sister.  Morning 
   and evening there were farm chores.  Mostly feeding and milking 
   the cows twice a day.  I got up at 5:00 in the morning in a 
   cold upstairs bedroom of an old farmhouse, dressed, and waded 
   through three foot snow drifts to get to the barn to help milk 
   twenty four dairy cows before breakfast and school on many a 
   winter morning.  And then, after breakfast, I walked a mile and 
   a half to the small one-room country school that I attended 
   through grade eight.  Then in the evening we milked the cows 
   again.  This was in the early 50's.  I did what I had to do.  
   And I never resented it.  As I grew older I was doing a lot of 
   the farm work.  In later years my father was, because of his 
   work schedule, often unable to be present for the evening farm 
   chores.  I and my younger brother did the chores.  My father 
   paid us a salary.  One dollar a week -- a salary which 
   gradually increased over the years through a series of fifty 
   cent wage increases to $2.50 a week.  During the summers I 
   spent a great deal of time on a John Deere tractor out in the 
   fields.  And summer was the time for putting up hay.  For 
   several years we put it up into the mow loose.  Then we started 
   baling it.  I can remember when I was only about 7 or 8 my 
   daily duties of feeding the cattle involved climbing to the top 
   of our silo and throwing down silage.  I enjoyed that.  I  also 
   remember, as a young boy of probably about 7, sitting by myself 
   out in a cold barn on wintry days husking corn from a huge 
   pile.  A very boring, tedius job.  For the first couple years
   on our farm we threshed wheat using a threshing machine.  A 
   neighbor owned the threshing machine and neighboring farmers 
   worked together, moving from farm to farm, threshing each other's
   wheat. After that we used a combine. For several years, in the 
   years when I was between about 6 and 11, we also raised red 
   raspberries and cucumbers.  I spent many a hot summer day 
   picking red raspberries or cucumbers (as did, also, the rest of 
   our family).  I remember we had to pick the cucumbers every 
   other day.  We had an acre or two.  You were stooped over in 
   the hot sun and it was unpleasant, menial, boring work.  I also 
   remember having to hoe the garden.  I was probably 8 or 9 then.  
   I didn't like that job either.  I was told to do it and I did 
   it.  I didn't complain.  I never complained.  The soil would be 
   baked hard and the rows were long.  I remember being put out in 
   the middle of a field full of weeds one summer day and being 
   told to pull the weeds.  I remember one winter spending day 
   after day for the most of the winter out with my father cutting 
   up trees with a crosscut saw --- I at one end and my father at 
   the other.  We had a number of apple and cherry trees my father 
   had decided to cut down.  We cut them up for firewood for our 
   furnace.  If chain saws were available, we didn't have one.  I 
   had to do a lot of hard, menial work that I didn't enjoy in 
   those years.   But I believe to this day that it was good for 
   me.  God gave me that childhood.  I thank him for it.  I mean 
   that very seriously.  It is the best way to raise a child.  It 
   was far better than the idle life of a city boy who has nothing 
   to do but get into trouble.  I wouldn't trade that childhood 
   for anything.  It wasn't all work.  We had a woods and a river 
   in the rear of our farm.  I was always a dreamer.  I spent 
   many hours sitting by the river fishing or just sitting by myself
   in the woods. We had some neighbors (a lady and her boy) who 
   liked to fish and I often fished with them. In addition, we had
   a small duckboat and I spent many hours out on the river in that
   duckboat, usually accompanied by our small dog, Bootsey. 
   Sometimes Bootsey would spy a muskrat and jump overboard and go 
   swimming after it. (Bootsey was a cute little mongrel that 
   someone had dumped near us when she was young. A neighbor 
   walked in one day and wondered if we might want her.) Also, 
   I was a walker.  I often went on long quiet walks by myself, 
   usually accompanied by Bootsey.

   When we first moved to our farm we had no elecricity.  We used 
   kerosene lanterns for light. It was a great day, a couple of 
   years after moving to the farm, when long electric poles suddenly 
   appeared lying along the side of our country road and we knew we 
   were going to have electricity. I remember my mother using a 
   hand operated cream separator to separate cream from milk and 
   using a butter churn to make butter. She ironed clothes using 
   irons heated on a stove.

   In my early teen years I remember I was having to have a lot of 
   dental work done.  My teeth were filled with cavities.  It was 
   one tooth after another.  My father took me to a dentist that 
   didn't use an anesthetic.  I remember my father asked me if I 
   minded.  I told him "no".  I knew that dentist was cheaper and 
   I didn't want my father to spend more money on me than was 
   necessary.

   Birthdays and Christmas were big days, of course.  The presents 
   seemed many and great to us but a great many spoiled, modern-day 
   children accustomed to lots of expensive presents would 
   probably turn up their nose at them.  I remember one year the 
   big, exciting present was an erector set for my brother and I.  
   That was the main present from Santa Claus and there were some 
   other smaller things.  Another year the big present was 
   tinker-toys.

   I was an A student and at the top of my classes in high school. 
   My main interest was mathematics, physics, chemistry, and 
   science, although I took an interest in all the subjects and 
   did well in all of them.  The secret to my success?  Hard work, 
   perseverance, determination.  I knew what I wanted.  I was 
   motivated.  I had goals and aspirations.  I wanted to make 
   something of my life.  I wanted a college degree.  I attended 
   college on a scholarship, studied mathematics and physics, and 
   obtained a degree.  I worked in research as my life career.  In 
   my mid twenties I met and later married a very attractive and 
   sweet girl.  We have been married for over 40 years and our 
   marriage has been a very quiet, serene and happy one.  

   I look around me.  I see a society where indecency, crudeness, 
   obscenity and badness appear to be the norm.  Most people 
   appear to have lives of turmoil and badness.  My life has been 
   a good one.  Life is what you make it.  Life is what you are.  
   I believe God has watched out over me in a special way over the 
   years.  I believe His protective hand has been over me.  And He 
   has blessed me greatly, in every way.  There is no doubt about 
   that.  


   June 2006



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