Like most Americans, I am a ‘Heinz 57’. I have ancestors from Scotland, Ireland, Holland, England, Canada, Australia and a smattering of native American indian, Osage Nation I am told. Sometime back, I wanted to find out who I am by finding out where I came from. So I contacted the Osage Nation and was promptly snubbed. They claim that since I am not full blooded Osage, that they have no time for me. They promptly hung up on me. But when I wanted to know more about my Scotish heritage, I was given whatever information I wanted. They wanted me to know all about my Scotish lineage. My grand mother, on my fathers side, had done alot of research and it turns out that I can trace my roots to 1717 in Philadelphia and beyond into Scotland, earlier than the 1500’s.
So, being proud of my lineage, I researched more to find my ancestors were trusted to be the most trusted guards, guarding not only the King, but the Queen and Kings family. Kind of like the most trusted of the Secret Service protecting the President and his family. And since I was mostly of Scot/Irish decent, I decided to buy a ring with my family crest engraved directly from Scotland. The crest proudly bears the clan motto ‘Virtutis Gloria merces’ which means ‘Glory is the reward of Valor’.
I could not wait to put on the ring bearing my families crest, which made me think ‘What does the motto really mean and do I measure up to my ancestors’? Loosely translated, Glory means to be held in high regard. And Valor loosely translated means to live a life of courage. So I had to ponder whether I was living a life of courage. As a child of Christ, we are told to live a life that would please God himself, so I fail in that regard. (Not perfect, just forgiven). But I still thought that the blood of my ancestors is coarsing thru my veins. Am I living a virtuous and courageous life, meaning a life of courage and high morals? Could I be trusted like my ancestors were? When I was in High School, I was trusted to be in charge of the materials room in wood shop. I would measure twice and cut one making sure when a student paid for four board feet of mohagany, they got four board feet of mohagany. All through my life, I was trusted in one way or another to do the right thing and I like to think I passed that test, but what about courage?
My father taught me love of God, love of family, love of country through his love of God, his love and dedication to family and his love of country through his many years of service. My mother, likewise taught me love of God, family and country. Then I had to think of all my family members that taught me love, honor and trustworthiness. All elements of virtue. But life lessons also include failure and pain, and I had my share of both. And when I thought that, I became very sad.
Think of it, as recent of the 1940’s, we had men and women lying about their age to serve our country in fighting evil, storming the beaches at Normandy, learning to fly bombers and fighters and being part of the forces fighting fascism and imperialism and several other types of ‘isms’. These young men and women knew it would be hard and that they might not survive, yet were still courageous. Compare them to the young men and women of today. Would todays young men and women be willing to fight for something bigger than their own personal interest? I fear the answer is a resounding ‘NO’. But how does todays America have to do with my ring? ‘Glory is the reward for Valor’.
Glory…to be held in high regard. Valor…living a life of courage and high moral standards. Loosely translated…If you live a brave life and high moral standards your reward will be to be remembered in high regard. One of the people running for President of the United States of America, the highest position of service to the country, is saying that she should be elected because she can be trusted with the deepest secrets of our country. Who is a spy, what information do we have on ISIS, where do we keep our nuclear stockpile? Can we trust Hillary to do what is right for the country even if it is wrong for her personally? Has Hillary lead a life of virtue? Will she be remembered in high regard? In a survey, even Hillary supporters agree she is untrustworthy. And what about the numerous people that mysteriously died just before they were to testify against one of the Clintons? I am fearful that the person that could be sitting in the most powerful position in the world could not measure up to a life of virtue nor be brave enough to tell the truth. Do you think Hillary should occupy the seat in the Oval Office?
I can’t explane socialism or how it became so accepted in America, that would require years of research and volumes of books. But I can only control myself. I can only aspire to live up to the memory of my ancestors. I can only make changes in my life to do what is right and live a life to make God, my family and friends remember me in high regard. It is up to me to start each day and live a courageous and honorable life and live up to the clan motto AND LIVE A LIFE PLEASING TO GOD. And you…?