“Carro me!” I asked my Dad. And he did. But then he left for awhile. And my mother and I left the ranch to live by the sea. My Welsh aunt joined us there.
“Cario fi!” I asked my Mom, speaking Welsh. By then I was two. She couldn’t.
For over a year we lived by the sea, two Welsh women and a small boy. We spent the days on the beach. I didn’t know it, but my Mom sent my Dad a photo of me taken on my birthday.
A year later, a month after my third birthday, North and South Korea signed a peace agreement. I wasn’t aware of it. Not long afterward my Dad brought his Infantry company home. He’d led his company in battles including those at Sandbag Castle and Heartbreak Ridge. He’d received his second Combat Infantryman’s Badge and second Presidential Unit Citation. This time he’d not added to the three Purple Hearts from his jaunt in Europe with the 101st.
This man I didn’t know took Mom and I away from the sea to live in Wales for awhile to reconnect.
“Cario Fi,” I eventually asked of my Dad. He carried me through the green grass, through the hills of Wales where my Grandfather and my Uncle drew coal from the ground for their English overlords.
We returned to the States, though not to the ranch. I grew. Too big now for my Dad to carry me very far, he carried the burden for me in prayer. Throughout the years, without complaint, he carried me until a few years ago. Again he left. No more battles or burdens for him then. He left to rest with Lord Jesus. He left me in the care of the One Who’d always been there for us, even when I didn’t know.
Footprints in the Sand
One night I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord. Many scenes from my life flashed across the sky.
In each scene I noticed footprints in the sand. Sometimes there were two sets of footprints, other times there was one only.
This bothered me because I noticed that during the low periods of my life, when I was suffering from anguish, sorrow or defeat, I could see only one set of footprints, so I said to the Lord. . .
“You promised me Lord, that if I followed you, you would walk with me always. But I have noticed that during the most trying periods of my life there has only been one set of footprints in the sand. Why, when I needed you most, have you not been there for me?”
The Lord replied, “The years when you have seen only one set of footprints, my child, is when I carried you.”
—Mary Stevenson, 1936
Lord Bless, Keep, Shine. . .