As the oldest son of eleven children (with seven boys), I felt more responsibility to help with family needs.
When I was nine years old, my mother almost died due to complications at the birth of one of my brothers. All of the children had to be “farmed out” to relatives until mom got well enough to take care of us. This was a very difficult trial, yet it increased my sense of responsibility.
When I was eleven, my parents became Christians and our home changed from a non-religious enviornment to a Christ-focused one. Shortly after this change, my father came down with a severe case of rheumatoid arthritis. This devastated our finances and placed a great deal of stress on family life. We even lost the home my Dad built for us and we continued to struggle through years of setbacks and limited finances.
Despite these difficult times, my parents’ faith in…
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