Humble Beginnings

I really appreciate those who prayed for my family this past week after the passing of my uncle. J.O. Willis, or “Uncle Red” as I knew him, was a great godly man who enjoyed life to the fullest and served as a great example of life to everyone who met him.

While I was in Louisiana for the funeral and celebration of life service we stopped by an old house that has become an historical monument in Louisiana. It’s a “Dog-Trot House” built in 1848 without the use of a single nail. And it’s one of the many places my dad called home while he was growing up in North Louisiana. He lived there while he was 9-10 years old.

Built in 1848, the house has been repaired and renovated, though mostly like it was when my dad lived there in the late 1940's.


Now that’s a house! It had four rooms, two on each side including the kitchen. The kids would sleep in the middle in the heat of the summer to take advantage of the breeze that might blow through. There was a black church across the street. On Sunday evenings they would sit on the front porch and enjoy the music from the church. The youngest of nine kids, my dad and one older brother and one older sister were the only kids living at home when they lived here. But during the war (WWII) several of the wives came to stay here with their kids while their husbands fought.

It was a simpler time. I don’t know if it was better (outhouses, no a/c, real struggle), but folks survived and came out strong. Today we think people are living in poverty if they only have one car and one TV in the house. You can’t miss what you never had.

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