Love of Country Ingrained…

Hey, it’s Ruthy here, and I love being part of Stars & Spurs week here at the hoppin-est Western group of cowboy-lovin’ gals there is…

What is it about Western images and culture and determination that makes us think of flag and country?

Well, it could be that flag flyin’ high at ranches all across the West/Midwest.

Or those small town celebrations that make us remove our hats, put a hand over our hearts and feel a prayer even if not one cotton-pickin’ word comes out of our mouths.

Or it could be at the graveside of a young man, the sharp knife of a short life, gone too soon in defense of his country. According to Wikipedia, over 80,000 soldiers, marines, sailors and airmen/women never plowed another field or husked another ear of corn following World War II, the Korean conflict and the Viet Nam War…

From some of the least-populated states came tens of thousands of Homeland Heroes.

From the “fly-over” states came the sound– and the cost– of freedom.

The sound of “Taps” being played on that single horn.

Bagpipes toning the tear-jerking chords of “Amazing Grace”

And the sight of a cowboy, on horseback, hunting that last calf as the sun dips down behind him.

The reminder of Christ and that shepherd we all love so much, leaving the 99 safe and sound to go after the one lost sheep.

When I think of Stars and Stripes and Spurs, that’s what comes to mind.

That in an amazing country that had been so divided 85 years before, shedding the blood of so many in a Civil War that tore us apart and bound us together, so many stood strong in the face of international terror when faced with the scourge of Hilter and Mussolini and Stalin, heartless men whose selfishness and greed dictated the loss of millions…

The image of a cowboy, standing guard at the gate or delivering a calf or a lamb or rocking his own baby floods our hearts with the goodness of the American West. This thought-provoking photo comes from Priscilla Du Preez over at Unsplash.

Because in the West it doesn’t matter how tall you are…

But how tall you stand.

And may God bless America….

Tobias Keller, Unsplash

Ruthy is giving away two copies of her newest Love Inspired Western “Healing the Cowboy’s Heart” to a couple of lucky cowgirls or boys but you’ve got to carry on the conversation below because when it comes to faith, hope and love, the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom stands strong, doesn’t it? And don’t get your knickers in a twist if you haven’t gotten your books from last month… you know our Ruthy lives on a farm and the grumpy farmer has been fighting rain, rain, and more rain so every little job doesn’t get done once… or twice… but three, four or five times. But they know they’re blessed to have jobs and lives beyond the farm, so there’s no lamentation… just a time-drain, folks. And one of these days our Ruthy will get to the Post Office and send out the last few weeks of books…. Sure as shootin’! 

Feel free to shout out the folks you know who have served… they have blessed every one of us by that sacrifice of time and safety!

 

 

Ruth Logan Herne
Multi-published, bestselling, award-winning author Ruth Logan Herne lives on a small farm in Western New York surrounded by grown kids, cute grandkids, cats, dogs, chickens, frogs, toads and snakes. That's why writing Westerns doesn't scare her. Not one smidge. Because she's surrounded by critters of all sorts, and has been known to teach lessons on snakes as available... She started writing Westerns by accident/invitation, and L-O-V-E-D it... matched with her love for both historicals and contemporaries, Ruthy's working on a new Western series for Love Inspired, New England mysteries for Guideposts and her historical Westerns for the indie market in 2018. She loves God, her family, her country and absolutely, positively loves what she does!

45 Comments

  1. Happy 4th of July Ruth, what a great article blog. We are so very lucky to be living in the Home Of The Brave & Proud of the free.

    1. Tonya, agreed! We are blessed… and we should always think to look for those silver linings, those half-full glasses!

  2. Another fantastic post. Thank you Ruthy for sharing your thoughts, the pictures, and how proud we are to be Americans. I pray God will continue to bless our nation as we pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

    1. Oh, Kathy, words imprinted on my heart. You know the more we learn about history (and the bad parts, too, they’re part of how stupid people can be… and sometimes evil) the more we should appreciate first our location… halfway across the world from the influence of others…

      Our wealth of industry, minerals, products, natural resources. We are so well-endowed!

      And that respect for those who got us here.

      May God bless American the way He has for so long… and may our young people realize this isn’t a given. It’s a gift.

      1. Yes, a gift, paid for by many who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

    2. Hi Ruth,
      Happy 4th to you and family.

      The west is the definition of the American dream. Strong, brave families going into the unknown. Showing their grit and determination.

      I am grateful to our military: past, present and future. I am in a military family. My son is Army veteran. My father and uncle Navy vets.

      God Bless the USA

  3. Great post Ruthy, I am proud of soldiers that have serve to make us a free world and kept us safe. My husband serves and his father and my father were all in the military. This world is rough right now but things will come around.

    1. Oh, what a beautiful comment! Yes…. I am in full agreement, and thank you to your family for their service. That’s wonderful!

      The world is rough now, but it’s been rough before and it’s survived… although the dinosaurs do appear to have lasted a lot longer, the brats!

      We are so blessed.

  4. I come from a military family. All the men served until this current generation. My daughter did serve her country in a different way. She was in the Peace Corp for two years. I thank everyone who served our country, no matter how.

    1. Debra, I’m so glad you shared that! Thank you to each and every one of them, and blessings on your daughter for sharing her gifts. My thanks echo yours!

    2. My dad and most of my uncle’s served during WWII. I lost an 19 year old uncle in Korea. My husband’s father was in the Air Force as was his uncle who was killed in France during WWII. He is buried there and my husband’s father is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. My husband served 25 years in the Air Force. It was a great way of life and we miss it. We are currently traveling in the Northwest and Alaska. We have been on several military bases. We had forgotten the end of the day ritual. At 6pm the bugle sounds and the National Anthem is played. People stop what they are doing and stand at attention until it is finished. A nice reminder of what it is all about. And the noise from the planes…the sound of FREEDOM.

      1. Oh, Patricia, I’m glad you told me how to find this below! Smart cookie!

        God bless you and your husband for that 25 years of service. Oh, my heart… that’s a marvelous thing.

        I love that ritual! Oh my stars, I didn’t know they did that as a matter of course, and I wonder if they still do it at all bases because what a cool thing that would be.

        Patricia, thank you for sharing with us!

  5. Avatar

    As a mom too two sons who have served in the military – US Marine Corps and US Air Force – my pride in our flag and country is immense! And we proudly raise the Red, White and Blue from the top of our grain system overlooking our family farm ??

    1. Barb,so nice to see you!!! And I loved my custard! 🙂 That made me so happy on a rather tough night, and it was all you.

      Bless you and those boys and thank you for their service… I love that you raise the flag from the top of the grain system! That is so cool!

      Oh beautiful, for spacious skies, for amber waves of grain!

  6. I enjoyed today’s post. Cowboys are definitely the backbone of this country. They should be celebrated every day. I hope you and your family have a good 4th!

    1. Janine, thank you! And I agree!

  7. Welcome Ruth. What a wonderful post. I had tears. Our son got his bachelors and masters in history, specifically Civil war through today. He is a reenactor for Civil War, Revolutionary war, World War 1 and World War 2. He and his wife like to teach about the different wars and why they were fought and what can we learn from them today. On my side of the family, I had two men who fought in world war 2, one man who fought in world war 1 and one man who fought as a sharpshooter in the civil war. These are just the ones that I know about right now. My husband is doing our genealogy and is sure to find more.
    This looks like a wonderful book. Thanks for the chance. Hope all goes well on the farm. Yesterday we got 1″ size hail and all I could do is watch it destroy all of garden. Sigh. Oh well. It is all in our good Lords hands.

    1. Oh, Lori, I love seeing reenactments. They bring the reality to life in a way that few things can, and especially for kids. It helps to cement things into their brains.

      Bless your family for that service. That’s wonderful. And the hail… oh gosh, Lori, when that kind of stuff happens I remember that I’ve got a good job, I’ve got food in the freezer, and I am blessed in so many other ways. We look for that silver lining, don’t we?

  8. Great blog, Ruth! Thank you for sharing! I hope you have a great 4th of July. We all live in a wonderful country and we are truly blessed.

    1. Agreed on all counts, Melanie! And the women’s National Soccer Team won yesterday in a hard-fought match… I had it on in my pocket while I was watering mums and I was so happy for them. 🙂

      Not Western, no, but I love seeing them do well. Blessings abound!

  9. Wonderful post! My cowboy brother is in the military and works on the farm in between. Farming life is a struggle this year, but we all still have many blessings. I thank all those who serve and give of their time.

    1. Susan, thank you! And every time I see a problem here, I remember how horribly the Midwest has been hit by record rains, snow, run-off and flooding and how folks can’t plant, lost stock, lost topsoil… there are so many ramifications of a disaster like that, they’re too many to count.

      And I realize again that we’ve got it good.

  10. Spoken eloquently and emotionally. Your post touched me. Have a wonderful 4th!

    1. Oh, you sweet thing! Thank you, lovely lady!

  11. Happy 4th!

    No cowboys in the family, but my dad and one brother both served in the US Army.

    1. Denise, I have no cowboys either! We’ll love them from afar!!!!

      And huge kudos to Dad and brother… thank them for us!

  12. Good luck with the weather, Ruthy! We are a military family: my husband retired from the Air Force, our son served in the Navy, one grandson was in the Marines and another is making a career in the Army. There are a lot of sacrifices but I am so proud of all of them for their service to our great country. And my husband grew up on a working ranch and could cut and show horses and ride a bull (for a few seconds, anyway!) with the best of them, so I guess he is a cowboy!

    1. He is a cowboy! You brat, I didn’t know you were married to a bull-wrasslin’ cowboy! 🙂

      And thank you to your military family for what they’ve done and what they continue to do. They bless us!

  13. Ruthy, I love seeing the flag wave and hear the patriotic songs. My dad was a band director so we grew up listening to all the patriotic marches like Stars and Stripes Forever and all those other great marches. I live in the west, so I see all those farms and ranches of the Great Plains.

    1. Oh, I love those military marches! They’re beautiful and the moment they begin to play I get all patriotic inside…. probably from watching WWII movies as a kid, right?

      The Great Plains seem to go on forever…. but they’ve met their share of hardship over the years. Drought. Locusts. Grasshoppers. And the Dust Bowl…. we learned some hard lessons there, didn’t we?

      But life goes on, we live and learn and we use that knowledge for the future….

      Thank you, Sandy!

  14. Ruthy, thank you for this fabulous post!

    1. Oh, Caryl, thank you for your kind words!

  15. We just got back from a wonderful visit to Washington DC. Every place we visited touched my heart! I have had a special place in my heart for the Founding Fathers and those who sacrificed so much in the Revolutionary Era…I love US History! Happy 4th of July! Of course the American Cowboy is part of that too because as we all moved West, they were a big part of American culture!

    1. Valri, you are so right. And isn’t it fun and inspiring to see the beautiful monuments and museums of D.C.? With all the infighting that comes out of there, to actually be there and immerse ourselves in history is beautiful… as long as we ignore the politics of the moment.

      I’m so glad you had the chance to go!

  16. God Bless America and God Bless all who have served, are serving and all who have it in their hearts to serve Our Beautiful Country and who keep us all safe. Happy 4th of July to all and may Our Lord keep on showering us all with Blessings. This is an Awesome article! Your book sounds and looks like a very good read! I love the cover! Thank you for sharing all this. 🙂

    1. Alicia! Thank you so much for your kind words. I am in total agreement…. we are blessed! Tucking your name in for the drawing.

  17. Happy 4th of July to all the Fillies and to all who visit the Junction. My comment somehow ended up under Ruthy’s reply to Debra K. Guyette.

    1. As far as I know they still do it at most bases. We have heard it it on Air Force, Navy, and Army bases this summer. We have also heard the revelie in the morning and quiet hour at 10 pm bugle calls at some bases. It is a nice tradition.

  18. Happy Independence Day! My dad served, step dad served older brother served and a lot of relatives on my dad’s side served back to the REvolutionary WAr. Idk how they do it. Blessed to have all my freedoms.

    1. Sabrina, that’s a legacy, honey. God bless them all, the genetics of being a “server” are an amazing thing. And to know that history is awesome! Good for you!

  19. I love that God gave the best example of love and sacrifice for us when He sent His son to save us. I have two sons that have served in the Army and the Navy but thank God they both survived. While I love others it would be much easier to surrender my own life for a stranger than to sacrifice my child for someone else. I can’t imagine watching my child suffering for someone else especially if I didn’t consider the person worth dying for (yep there is my self-righteousness rising up). God put in the hearts of our service men and women and first responders to lay down there lives for me if needed and that is so humbling. Thank you to all of you! I think of cowboys as the first responders of the past.

    1. Vicki, that is so beautifully put. I agree 100%. That ultimate sacrifice of the cross sets an example that we should all see and embrace… and then when life takes a hard right or left, I remember Mary, following that cross. How heartbroken and devastated she must have been, but she followed and stood by him with several friends. The image of those women, banding together to be with Jesus has been my inspiration through many storms… They didn’t run.

      They stayed.

      The valor in that move has been a mainstay for me as a mother, a daughter, sister, friend… We all fall down, but when times get tough, I think of Mary going that mile. And everything else seems so very easy by comparison.

  20. We go all out and decorate with red, white and blue and wear those colors in our clothing on the 4th. It is my favorite holiday.
    Interesting article.

    I like the ‘CD of John Wayne called AMERICA: WHY I LOVE HER says it all for me and my family

    1. Joye, I’ll have to get that CD and listen to it! Or search it on YouTube. I think I heard it years ago but it’s been a long time.

      What a great tradition, Joye. I love that you do that. And the patriotic colors???

      Love it!

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