My dad was always stressing the family’s reputation was easily damaged. My sisters and I all walked around with the burden of generations on our shoulders. I felt every ancestor and every future child. He would always say whatever we did reflected on the family.
Since I am now well grown with children of my own, I see the truth of that standard. The children do things in school and in sports that are sometimes less than sweet tasting to a Mom’s senses. But that is not near as hard as when the effects of that act are felt by their siblings. They are looked at suspiciously for a time until it blows over in the ever-changing winds of the community, revisited when anything like that is done again.
It is truly never forgotten, someone, somewhere remembers and waits to place families into boxes from which they forever struggle to escape.
I was reading about descendents of Meriwether Lewis, a famous explorer, that purportedly killed himself in October of 1809. Now, hundreds of years later, the family wants to debunk that and prove that he was instead murdered. Who cares? Obviously the family has struggled for years with the conclusion of the authorities in the early 19th century. Suicide. How hard was that for his wife, his children, his grandchildren? They want to break free of the box in which the family was placed. Unstable, Drunkard. Maybe they can clear their name, I hope so.
A good name is better than precious ointment Ecclesiastes 7:1
A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches Proverbs 22:1