Friday, December 5, 2014

NEW TODAY: #FamilyHistoryFriday - SHARE YOUR STORIES!!!

Today is the first day in a wonderful journey called #FamilyHistoryFriday.  Spearheaded by Rachel, this effort will bless many lives.

We encourage you to read her POWERFUL article - and to share with family and friends.

"Do you want a sure way to eliminate the influence of the adversary
 in your life? Immerse yourself in searching for your ancestors." 
~Elder Richard G. Scott

Each of us have limited time on this earth.  How will we spend our days?  How can we learn from and help those who have gone before and aren't able to do these things for themselves?

Reading about my ancestors has really blessed and strengthened me.  In the mid 1800's my great-great grandfather was headed to the America's with his family who'd recently joined the church in Norway.  Before they left, his father had a dream that one of his children would not make it all the way to Utah.  His son, Andrew, was taken sick on the ship and pronounced dead by the ship's doctor.  The policy was to throw the deceased overboard so as to not infect others.  But, his father protested.  This was not the child in his dream.  He pleaded with the ships doctor to give him one-more-day and then he pleaded with the Lord to bless his son to 'awaken'.  The next morning Andrew 'came to' and...they made it safely to New York.  Sadly, on their way across the desert plains, one of their daughters took ill and passed away.

Andrew's Parents: Tellef John Israelsen and Dorothea Markussen

I am SO thankful that his father was in-tune enough to know his son Andrew (my great-grandfather) would live, otherwise, I, and my son (his namesake, Andrew) would not be here.  Nor would any of my family or siblings etc.

Reading about my maternal grandmother, Eva, and her tender husband, my Grandpa Victor (whom I've felt close to since I was three and he passed away) and their lives together on the farm has given me insights into the depths of their souls, the love they shared and the personal trials they experienced.

Book their Children Compiled
Days on the Farm

Hard Workin' Boys

Dressed Up
Israelsen Girls ('the twins' and their older sister)

My sweet Grandma at age 103 - two years before she passed away

A few weeks ago I got their book out again and read about their first year of married life and my grandfather being deployed for military service far from home.  Their letters to each other were deeply moving to me.  They were so in-love, missed each other tremendously and eagerly, and prayerfully, awaited the time they'd be back together - hoping to never be separated again. 

Please consider sharing messages about #FamilyHistoryFriday with us and with those you love.  We'd love to hear what you do and what you are learning.  Isn't it neat that we can be connected with people of all time and ages?  Our progenitors experienced similar emotions as we do during a different time and era of the world (emotions can connect us) and we can learn much from them.

If you have a story to share - write it below or send us a link to your blog where you've written it.  We love learning about YOU and YOUR family.  It blesses us all!!!

Remember to use #FamilyHistoryFriday on your post.