Monday, May 26, 2014


                               By Ada Brownell

What could I imagine I would be like when I grew up?

Here I was, a scrawny freckled-face redhead, poor, wearing my brother’s hand-me-downs. My brother’s union-alls had a button up flap in the back that had to be unbuttoned by one of the big people in the family before I could go to the outhouse. I think I had a flower sack dress or two to wear to church.

We wouldn’t have had enough to eat had we not had a cow, a huge irrigated garden and raised chickens and pigs
When I started school, Daddy gave Mama permission to buy me three new little cotton dresses from Montgomery Ward. The new pair of shoes had to last until the next school year.

I always knew my parents didn’t have an extra penny, and being the eighth child I often felt a little guilty for barging my way into the already crowded house, among four sisters and three brothers who weren’t that excited about another mouth to feed.

Yet, that wonderful family helped me to catch an eye for the future at a young age. I watched the excitement in the house when my oldest sister, Marjorie, went to church with a high school friend and became a Christian. One by one all the older siblings, and finally my parents, accepted Jesus as Savior and I soon learned Jesus loved me, too, and God had a plan for my life.

God's love was a little secret I held close to my heart even while being ridiculed by other children because of my freckles and my red hair. The pretty little girls in frilly dresses never wanted to be my friend.

But all this time something wonderful grew inside me: an intense desire to learn in school, to know how to sing and play the piano (all my siblings were musicians), and tell the world the message of John 3:16, “For God so loved the world he gave his only Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Our family squeezed every drop of joy from each day, but we always thought about tomorrow in the backs of our minds. My siblings were all achievers. I saw myself playing the piano for church someday and singing in gospel groups like my sisters did.

I had no grandiose ideas about what else I would do, except someday I would meet my Savior and live forever because He died and rose again. I wanted to tell everybody.

I studied the Bible, listened to our pastor’s sermons and teachings, and found myself in my early teens teaching children, and then leading youth. I hadn’t expected  those opportunities. I prepared. God opened doors.

My writing career started like that. I had no idea I would become a writer, but I had something to say I thought needed sharing and discovered editors thought it was worth reading.

Working as a newspaper reporter showed me there still was much to share. In gathering news a journalist touches almost every aspect of society. We report on the achievers, reveal life’s disasterous complications, and what happens when wickedness grips the heart and threatens to blow apart the hope of the eternal soul.

My burden is for the youth of America. So much potential! So much opportunity! But Satan lurks everywhere seeking whom he may devour. 

How can I not show them the path to wonderful tomorrows? How can I not show them how to prepare for the exciting journey of abundant life? How can I not show them how to avoid those who would steal their faith, rob them of their health and talents, and destroy their loved ones and eternal future?

So, I have a book filled with practical helps on developing your talents, being and looking your best, making the right connections, guarding your name’s fame, and much more, with many inspiring examples and illustrations.

Jesus said not to worry about tomorrow, but we’re told to prepare for what is ahead. The theme of my book is close to Solomon’s advice quoted here from The Message: “Don’t for a minute envy careless rebels; soak yourself in the Fear-of-God That’s where your future lies. Then you won’t be left with an armload of nothing” (Proverbs 23: 17.
©Ada Brownell May 2014

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