SOUTHERN TRADITIONS: Faith, Freedom, Family, Farm (Home), and Friends
Heart to Heart


My Destiny


For the reasons that our upcoming conference will bestow homage to the South’s Bible Belt: my husband is a Southerner from Arkansas; I am a Southerner at heart, and without realizing it, lived out the Southerner’s gracious hospitality and lifestyle steeped in traditions for which they are famous; and finally because I now have a farm in a region that even Southern Living magazine dubs the South, albeit the Upper South. I won’t complain, even if we barely made it. I am proud to be part of the Southern culture, and in the next upcoming issues I, along with others, will explain why.


My First Grade Teacher Recently Called


My first grade teacher and I had kept in touch until Jon and I became busy leading our homeschool support group. It was a shame that I did not make time to continue this relationship, but I just could not keep up with everything I desired. It had been nearly 30 years since I had spoken to Miss Billie Beaver. Thankfully, she pursued me and called last week.


Aunt Billie, as I had become accustomed to calling her, was so sure that we had probably moved that she had her apology ready for the person who picked up the phone. She said that she was prepared to say that she was sorry to bother them as she was just trying to find her “prize” student that she had not talked to for a very long time. Of course, it was first grade, you know—one plus one equals two while Dick and Jane play with Spot.


When we get together this next month, I am going to ask her many questions, one of which will be why she considered me her “prize” student. She was a Christian, and she did just tell me that even as such a young child, your heart was so tender towards God. So it may be that she had hope that her faith would be continued through me, since she had no children of her own.


Nevertheless, she was thrilled that I still lived at the same address and still had the same phone number. Confirmation, once again, that I possessed Southern blood. Southerners are stable traditionalists, you know, especially when it comes to their homes. So here I am still at the same location for the past 36 years.


Aunt Billie began her conversation with reminiscing about me in her first grade class. She told me that she continually pleaded with me, and in her first grade teacher’s voice, repeated her requests— Darlin’ Candy, please stop taking care of everyone else and go out and play and have some fun for yourself.


Yes, I still have report cards from my first three years of school that say Candy is an excellent helper. She spends all her free time tying other children’s shoes, wiping their runny noses, helping them with their schoolwork, and hugging them.


It was actually this teacher, the principal, and my second grade teacher who came to my father and mother in 1965 and recommended to them that they place me in another school away from that neighborhood for the very fact that I spent all my time taking care of the neighborhood’s poor children. They then went on to exhort my parents that if they wanted me to reach my full potential, they needed to transfer me to a better school. As a result of this meeting, my parents did just that.


We moved to the suburbs so I could go to a four star educational institution. It was dreadful, as it worked to undermine everything my parents had taught me. The families were not friendly. The children were disrespectful to their parents. And though they needed help, they were in a position of affluence that kept them from seeking or accepting such. It was during that tumultuous time of rebellion during the ‘60s and ‘70s that blossomed into drinking, drugs, immorality, rock music, and partying. I opted for a horse and thus spent most of my afternoons following school riding while I prayed and contemplated the important issues of life—subjects that no one in my neighborhood or school cared to discuss.


Aunt Billie went on to tell me that your family was the bright spot in those families’ lives. Those immigrants were so poor, living in such small quarters and raising such large families.


Those immigrants may have been financially poor, but they were inherently rich in an understanding of family. Indeed, my best memories are from my first eight years of life in that neighborhood where my family took care of the other families in their community and where I followed in their footsteps. But I think that I came out the richer because it was from those immigrants that I learned what it meant to live in a multigenerational community of families of which I have written and spoken about before; where I actually saw several generations of families living and working together for the welfare of the extended family. They were close, which made for a tight knit community.


Aunt Billie supposed I was still taking care of homeschooling families. I told her that I was, as our family had just finished our conference, hosting our church to our farm, getting ready for our graduation, and planning our yearly activities for our homeschooling families. She responded by saying that she knew that was the destiny that God had ordained for me.


Southern Women


Upon reflection, isn’t that what Southern women do—take care of everyone else. Of course! That is their claim to fame—genuine Southern hospitality; caring for their family, homes and farms, church body, community, and country.


As a matter of fact, Faith, Freedom, Family, Farm (Home), and Friends were the South’s most treasured possessions, which they gratefully acknowledged as precious gifts from their heavenly Father and subsequent earthly forefathers. They knew that these precious treasures were entrusted to them for their time on the land that was bequeathed to them, so that they in turn protected, nourished, and cherished what was theirs by rite of passage, and to which they accounted as sacred. And it was this divine heritage that they impressed upon their own offspring, as future caretakers of the sacred trust.


Many of you probably never considered yourself to be Southerners. But what you may not realize is that most of our families are Southern in the truest sense of the word because faith, freedom, family, farm (home), and friends are our most cherished possessions.


But really it was because they were Christians, thus the title: The Bible Belt. Soon you will realize that our homeschooling families are exactly the same group of people the North had to dispose of during the Civil War because their faith, family, farms (home), and deep understanding of freedom posed a stalwart roadblock to their diabolical scheme of implementing their socialistic/communistic policies. Indeed, our Constitution has never been the same since these revolutionaries won their fight over states’ inalienable rights, nor have families been the same overall since they destroyed the backbone of multigenerational faithful families’ continuity.


Regarding states’ rights, consider for a moment the present scenario here in Missouri where our faithful representatives have stood against national healthcare and Common Core, but from which they will never be able to protect their constituents because the federal government’s oppressive, totalitarian wishes now take precedence over states’ rights and the will of their people. This is the reality of the issue on which the South stood, and the result of the overthrow of the South’s staunch stand for states’ rights, which places the consequences of the Civil War into historical context for us today.


Ideas and actions have far reaching consequences. The South’s visionaries understood this well. So did the North. And thus the battle raged over God as Lord or man as lord through the State. It is the age-old battle that began in the Garden.


If you heard Paul Jehle’s workshop titled Bonhoeffer vs. Hitler-Resistance to Tyrants that covered—What was the condition of the German Church at the time Hitler was elected, and why did Bonhoeffer describe its doctrine as “cheap grace”? What lessons can we learn from the drama in Germany just prior to and following Hitler’s take-over, and how might we apply these lessons today in America—you realized the stark reality of the parallel of our country today with Germany shortly before the Holocaust. And so you will realize after this upcoming conference why the homeschooling community poses such a threat to our tyrannical government today.


However, you will also find great hope in the fact of God’s Providence throughout history. For Christ has already won the victory against our enemy. He has delivered us from our bondage to sin and death so that we may have life and have it abundantly. He has drawn us out of this present cultural revolution against the authority of God’s Word and placed us firmly on the straight and narrow, where we homeschool our children instead of the State. Our duty then lies in going forward to dispossess the wicked and take back what is rightfully ours by divine direction through discipling others with the Word of God.


Stay tuned for further articles that are sure to bless your darlin’ Southern (Christian) hearts!