As to fresh food! I have always said that, no matter how small my income, (and heaven knows it has been small enough) a good share of it must be spent for milk and butter that my children could have all they wanted of these commodities. But no one knows how hard it has been many times in town when I have seen them, undaunted by any market price, consuming great quantities of both, not to cry out, "Oh, go easy. Go easy."
Now, when I go into my pantry where there are pans of milk covered with thick yellow cream, though I know that milk is costing both time and money, I am filled with gratitude.
Then there is peace. In town often I went into my garden early, so fresh after the sprinkling my husband had given it the night before, to try and imbibe some of the peace there, to store up a little equilibrium against the day's irritations. I never got there early enough. Invariably somebody's automobile would begin chortling and choking, frightening away the song birds. Its gas would taint the fresh morning breeze. Cars would tear madly down the highway, or an early milk wagon would pass. So now when I stand on my back porch, soon after dawn has lifted, and look over the plowed field--a velvet brown oasis in a green desert--and hear only the birds singing, or a rooster crowing; inhale only the fresh mountain air, heavy with perfume of wild azaleas, well--I could more truly worship God there than in any church I ever entered.
So much for our joys and blessings. So many of them still remain unlisted. Especially these two: fresh air and sunlight. Whenever I go into a building where there are ventilators, or read an advertisement for a product that is better than sunshine--those gifts with which God is so lavish--I wonder what God is thinking. I think of a certain Bible verse: God has created man honest and upright, but man has sought out many inventions. While I may recognize the need of such inventions, a sense of defeat comes to me. God arranges it so that man must work for his bread ( or has man arranged that, too?) but to even the laziest and most undeserving He would give air and sunlight. Yet how few have its full benefit!
And I believe that we are meant to be creatures of free air, free soil and free sunlight; that the sun must seep deep into our bodies, the soil must send its magic up through our limbs, that the freshest of air must reach every part of our lungs if we would be the whole creatures God intended. Whatever we do to confine ourselves hampers our powers rather than enlarges them.