RURAL BRYANT, SD, PRESENTS:
A Union of Godly Expedience,"
A Tribute to Peder and Gurina Stadem,
by Gr Grandson, Ron Ginther
by Mother Gurina Stadem
to her Stepson Alfred Stadem,
May 2, 1918
through both life's infrequent joys and frequent tribulation,
so Peder the widower sought a wife again
for the sake of his motherless children.
as much as a good-hearted man could,
but he thought over his burdens and prospects,
and his eye fell on a certain lady
many thought resigned to widow's weeds or widowhood.
--she a father to
her five own,
and he a mother for the surviving three he and Marie
had in their youthful vigor sown.
Both sorely needed each other
--she a father to her five own,
and he a mother for the surviving three
he and Marie had in their youthful vigor sown.
the prime thing was assured the act of expedience--
as long as they could prevent rancor and disunion.
along with obedience and duty,
and they must not play favorites,
which creates rivalry and jealousy.
of some small-minded folk--
what else can they do?
But wiser matrons of pioneering stock
knew marriageable males of Peder's mature worth
were choosey and, if not rare, were few.
attending well to her household.
She could even handle a loom
and weave a decent coat!
making one of two families,
while restarting marital relations,
a younger man with an older woman!
Yet she bore him two sons
in this unlikely, autumnal match--
which could only mean the elder's fire rekindled,
as she clung to her hot-blooded Stadem catch.
like September's or October's fruit,
ripened just in time before frost
struck her birth-scarred womb, plant and root.
and settled back on the Farm but never married,
so their grapes proved seedless--
like the fig tree that hungered Jesus,
full of green leaves, but otherwise barren and fruitless.
set in a flock of half-brothers and half-sisters,
they might have thought themselves a cut above--
such feeling naturally occurs.
all these blended, half-and-half Stadems
went about their humdrum tasks as stoic Nordics,
with diligence and rigorous, starched Sunday decorum.
no Viking throwback in all his brutal glory,
erupted in all this motley, humble Stadem tribe!
with a fervent spirit of ancient agrarian tribal cohesion,
to which today's lofty, urban, technologically advanced generations,
that generally abhor such togetherness,
no longer subscribe.
than through corporate and individual bonding, day by day,
in all the humble activities and work
of field, barn, school, and home
that climaxed in Church on Sunday.
the sanctified Day of Worship and Man's Rest,
ordained by God for all the sons of Shem,
and Ham, and Japheth.
and the day is pretty much like any in the week,
we rush about stressed and strained,
wondering why our faith-life is limp, pallid and weak.
it was real--
prayers, even devotions, before and after meals,
made sure Christlikeness
into each young heart was deep driven.
it served its purpose for them
as long as it could reasonably last.
that include gay marriage and transgenders,
whatever lifestyle or sex modern, self-defining people opt to choose.
when we let the Holy Sabbath ways go?
What was once the week's main focus,
the linchpin on which the door
of every godly home swung to and fro?
and the slow, immoral stain
that darkened and divided human intellects
soul from soul, with greed for worldly, selfish gain.
and Christ's Way for man and family
was preached, taught, practiced, instilled,
and by example, Catechism recitation,
and discipline, and more discipline, drilled within.
or the Solidarity-Practicing, God-Fearing Family defined by the Word of God?
Take your pick, choose this day!
But I will remember faithful Joshua,
who in the wilderness led the way,
and carried Moses's holy rod.
could not have foreseen the radical changes
we see everywhere we look.
I have to question that!
All they knew, and all they had to know
for a good, godly life,
was the Way set by God's eternal, Norwegian-language Book.