This Week's Story

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The American economy crashed and millions of Americans struggled to overcome the Great Depression.

This Week’s Story relives American history and the Bible through brief inspiring stories presented on mp3 audio recordings and text for reading.

Mama's Love and Black Tuesday, part two

“Mrs. Steiner, my birthday is in two days.”

“Yep, Eli, I remember that! And, oh yes, David’s birthday was May 3rd. We talked by phone. I wish I had mailed him a present.”

Then there are the holidays for happy and sad events.

Dates! So many affect us. War years! Certainly, Black Tuesday! October 29, 1929! Wall Street stock market in New York City crashed. The Great Depression began. The majority of Americans were not buying stocks. How could something so remote and tricky to understand become traumatic for millions of people in the United States?

The country struggled with economic needs for about ten years. People in every state in the country and in many other countries suffered in the Great Depression. People lost homes and farms. Here they had lived their lives. Jobs ceased to exist. Bank accounts were empty. Some people lost hope. Others became ingenious with how to find or make or grow food, shelter, and clothing.

A few people became rich in the Depression. They sold products or services for which a market existed, people like William Boeing with planes, Walter Chrysler with cars, and J. Paul Getty with oil and real estate.

So many questions! Barbara, could they be answered or was that hopeless? What was not necessary to living? What was essential? What skills could a family learn to avoid spending money? How could churches help? How should the federal government help? Would God bring healing to the country? Could community friendships continue? What about people living where the weather was destroying huge areas? Where should they go? What about Americans who had the lowest paying jobs? They lost their jobs due to an increase in competition for jobs.

My mother, her two siblings, and their mother all found ways to help earn money to pay bills. Their mother had worked as a teacher and nurse. She was an excellent seamstress and had a seemingly endless supply of ideas to meet needs.

As I read Mother’s diaries, I see her family kept their values in these difficult times. First, was faith in God and His Word, the Bible. Then there was family, service, music, and learning.

They never lost their love for adventure. Zest they possessed! They remind me of a terrific verse in the Bible: “In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” Romans 8:37

In Mom’s later years her family joined her in travel, hiking, inner-tubing down a river, games on a vacation day, laughter and discussions with friends at a Sunday get-together.

She and my father encouraged my five sisters and I to grow spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. I never adequately appreciated how humble Mother was. As I grow older, I realize that I could have learned so much more from her skills and depth of character.

Today’s story focuses on times of challenge. May we meet our summons to times of challenge with courage and humility.

Barbara Steiner, and I, Todd Warren, appreciate bringing you today’s story.

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