In the busyness of our fast-paced world, it's easy to feel overwhelmed by the cultural shifts that seem to daily sweep across society. Yet, there is a strong force that can shape the fabric of our ever-changing culture, helping us weather its ups and downs, namely, the warmth of our family circles in the heart of our own homes.
I strongly believe that we can change the culture through the seemingly ordinary acts of raising families, being neighborly, attending church, becoming self-sufficient through food production, and saving money. Practicing these simple and small changes can have a huge impact not only on our current society, but on future generations as well.
Here is the Church, Here is the Steeple
Church is a place where we can come together and worship outside of our homes. Strength comes as we gather in a house of worship with others who share the same values. In a world that seems so eager to destroy the foundations of Christianity, holding on to the traditions of our faith and values is even more important. These gatherings bring not only stability, but also peace and comfort while we fight against the cultural storms.
It's also important to have times of family worship. My family—along with many others that I know—believe that family worship inside the home is just as important as going to church to worship together with like-minded believers.
Raising the Next Generation
Practicing intentionality in the daily choices we make is another way to fight the culture wars from our homes. Gathering around the dinner table as a family, sharing a meal and talking about the day—despite careers and demands of life—is one way to do this. And when it's time for bed, reading or telling stories passed down from generation to generation is another.
Families who do these simple things actively create traditions in their home, teaching children values that will follow them as they grow and have families of their own one day. These traditions, values, and morals will go even further as those same children navigate the world and make choices as adults.
Like a Good Neighbor
Another way we can make a difference is by being more neighborly, showing hospitality to others. As a child, if someone new moved into the neighborhood, they would get a visit with some homemade cookies or a fresh-baked pie. We neighbors kept an eye on one another, and if something ever looked out of place, we were all quick to notify each other.
But nowadays, many of us are so busy that we forget to check on our neighbors. Getting back to that sense of community can make a big difference for you and the families around you. Feeling a part of something can improve more than just our lives—it can also encourage others to get more involved in the community.
Living Off the Land
For us, the decision to start a homestead was an easy one. The ever-increasing prices in eggs, vegetables, and other products made the argument that it was definitely worth putting in the hard work ourselves, rather than depend on the big box stores for provisions. Our whole family has taken part every step of the way, helping with planting, irrigation systems, clearing the land, harvesting, and of course, eating!
This hard work has taught our family valuable lessons, such as the importance of owning your own land and of providing for your family. It has taught us that we don’t not have to rely upon the government for every need.
In learning this self-sufficiency, we have also grown wiser in our spending habits. We make more intentional choices when it comes to shopping, and doing so increases a family culture that prioritizes stability over the whims that sometimes overcome us in stores.
Emotions change daily and can depend upon our life choices and surroundings. So take time to focus on what is real and true. Find others who have the same burden to create a culture of faith and strength, to get back to God and country. Add a tradition in your family to vote by convictions, rather than feel-good speeches.
We need strong leaders in our communities that will advance the values and traditions for which we are fighting. What better way than to start cultivating those strong leaders both in and around our homes?
Ashley Carter is a wife, mother, and grandmother living in Elmore County, where she and her husband run Farm to Table Living and Carter Farms. Ashley serves as Controller and Executive Assistant at 1819 News. She is currently working on an inspirational book of short stories. To connect with the author of this story or to comment, email [email protected].
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