I look around and find so many blessings.
Like rain sparkling on windows and shining up the streets. Grass not its usual late summer dead yellow but green, so shimmery green, with silver threads from early morning rain. Misty, golden shards of sunlight glinting through mounds of clouds, soft gray like bird feathers. In August. In Abilene. A bit of cool air and shelter from the fierceness of blazing West Texas heat. Such a blessed reprieve.
And there were those blessings as a child, reading with fascination about American pioneers, reading so much fiction about pioneer ingenuity and courage, raising barns, harvesting crops, celebrating holidays with other pioneers.
All that is now seeming to converge on the present with wonderful days ahead of pioneer ventures and adventures. Like recently, half a dozen of us came to a friend’s place to view the hundred year old plus Dudley Grocery Store. This quaint sign rests high above the doorway:
Western Produce Co., Inc. CASH CREAM BUYING STATION
Isn’t that unique? Not sure where the punctuation and pauses go, but I like it, respect the history of the area whispering of treasures from days gone by.
Our friend loves this country, her ancestors and family having lived on 130 or so acres here for about the same number of years. We would love to incorporate the boards of this old store into buildings on our land, and she wants us to have them when it’s pulled down. What a gift.
Just imagine those weathered boards as brand new, the citizens of Dudley and the surrounding farmlands as new customers coming out of the heat into the shade of a live oak and up the steps of the store. I can see what a blessing that would’ve been!
As a child one of the highlights of visiting my granny was being handed a nickel to put in my pocket and walk with my brother around the corner to buy a fudgesicle in the neighborhood store. A bell above the door jingled as we walked in and scanned the area eagerly. We had gotten there without grownup help. We had money to spend. There was only one choice for us. We made a beeline for the refrigerated case and selected a fudgesicle. Oh the blessing of creamy chocolate!
I dearly loved the ice cream, the experience of the journey, the visit to my sweet granny.
And yet these days and the days shortly to come are filled with the anticipation of being with people who love land and history and want to participate in pioneer projects together. The silvery old boards will experience new life in a new location. We humans will experience newness too as we work together.
Somehow the thought of being on our land soon, pursuing the cultivation of hearts, land, and faith is even better than sentimental memories of fudgesicles!