Tonight me and The Mister took a drive after supper. It was the perfect time of day. The early evening sun was brilliant against a few stubborn rain clouds that refuse to budge without letting the last of the sun dry them out, as if the gusty wind that was moving in was no match for their weight of water.
We ride in the quiet. He stops at the country store where the cigarette smoke is the thick and boiler cooking some of the finest tasting boiled peanuts nearly blocks the front door. You have to sidestep it and its wonderful southern scent that follows you in through the swinging glass door making your double think your decisions to just get a Coca-cola.
We ride on now taking the the back roads, and tonight The Mister decides to go through the little jewel of Jasper County along Hillsboro Hwy. While I ride listening to The Mister hum the last few lines of “Sweet Annie” I hear God whisper, “Look Child, I painted the brilliant sunset in a shade of silver I knew you’d like.”
We ride a little further sharing our Coca Cola and in his usual way, he points out deer on the treeline while I smile and we talk about everything and nothing at all. I see this flag waving in the evening breeze. I make The Mister slow down so I can capture it with my phone camera. I think about the man that lives in this house that flies this bi,g bold American flag. Maybe his son is in Afghanistan, or maybe he just believes like any good southern Putnam County man that faith and freedom are intertwined. Maybe he understand in a world gone mad with catch phrases like “tolerance”, ” shared wealth” and “leftist majority” that freedom and God transcend the desire of man. And if he knows that, then he knows that neither is free. Maybe he understands that people died for the things it seems are brushed aside in our society. Maybe he understands that a Man died for us to really understand freedom. It was never free, it cost everything.
I tell The Mister to slow down so we can see a church just inside the county line. No doubt the pastor sits tonight in his chair reading the sermon he has prepared this week for his sheep. He rereads the passage and as if the Holy Spirit shines a laser beam on the last few words. New understanding of the passage he struggled over all week clears and the words come. The words come so quickly he can barely keep up. He scribbles his hasty notes of The Spirits whispers on the margins of his neatly typed sermon. Then as they continue to pour into his mind, he finds an old offering envelope and uses that. At the same time down the road, a woman bathes her children and lays out their Sunday morning clothes hoping to avoid last minute chaos. She has been going to this church all her life. Her husband comes with her most of the time and the children, all three, are there every Sunday. Tonight she lays down and whispers to The Father, ” I need to know You are near. I need a ‘Word’ as the old folks say. Are you there God? Will you speak to me , deep down in my bones tomorrow?” God smiles, little does she know that the speaking has begun and tomorrow she will hear a direct “Word” that will shake her to her bones.
It’s almost dark now on our Putnam County ride. The Mister holds my hand. I tell him ” I’m glad I’m not a city girl” and he smiles and says ” Well, I’m glad too”. I tell him all about the secrets God has whispered to me over the week and he listens. He does not share His sacred secrets as openly but he tells me about a conversation he had with God just yesterday. As we share the ways God speaks to us, we see this country side and in the form of God’s deep voice, we both hear Him whisper ” Your best days are coming.”
Goodnight Putnam County. I love to ride your back roads with my Love. I love the way the sun sets on your grassy hills in the early spring. I love how we pass your cows that graze in this last light of day on this Saturday evening.
The Mister seems to have run out of country road and heads up the highway now. It’s night time here in Putnam County. Tomorrow is the Lord’s Day and we will worship the King for who we were created. Good night Putnam County. You are my most favorite place on earth.
As we head up the drive The Mister asks ,” We still some of that cake leftover from last night? I sure would love some with a glass of good ole cold milk.” I smile. Of course I saved him some cake.