Flying on Faith, Four Wheels and the Red Dirt Road
The imagination of a child, their laughter, squeals of pure joy and fun. When you can play and not worry about “adult” responsibilities, you have the world at your fingers and the mind to do with it what you can dream of. This is how we were raised, as well as learning to love and serve the Lord. The big open fields and tall pine trees provided us a play ground to build and create an imaginary world of who done it, cops and robbers, war forts, club houses, putt-putt and race tracks.
We climbed tress and hillsides, not having a care in the world. The fear of falling or tumbling down never crossed our minds. We had the ability to ride our bike down the red dirt road without trying to cross a busy city street. Most days when the road was dry and dusty, we could ride our bike down the big hill without pedaling. We would be going so fast it took everything we had to keep the bike in control. The handle bars would be shaking, we would hold our legs out, because we could not keep up with pedals. This hill was steep.
Every day was a new beginning and we were always adding to our club houses or games. As children, we had no boundaries with our imagination and no fear of failing. This is the way Jesus is watching and wanting you to chase after him and look to him for courage and strength in this world he has given you.
When Peter took courage, boldness, and faith to question the Lord. Matthew 14:28 Peter said to Him, “Lord if its You, command me to come to You on the water.” In this chapter of Matthew, Peter walks on water, his eyes were fixed on the Lord. Once he looked away from the Lord he quickly sank. As he was sinking he cried out to the Lord to help me, and the Lord did. One thing Peter did was ask. The Lord then questioned him. “Ye of little faith”. In the song, “Reckless Love”, by Bethel Music this speaks volumes of the Love Jesus has for us He is always with us. We have to keep our eyes on Him.
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it
I don’t deserve it
Still You give yourself away
Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God
Proverbs 2 : 8 He guards the paths of the just and protects those who are faithful to him.
God had plans for us to grow into adults. Every day we stepped outside to play, His protection was around us. Granny and Mom’s prayers for us never ceased. Today was one of those days.
We, being my sister and brother. I am the oldest. My sister is the middle child and brother is the baby. At this point of our life we were 5, 7, and 9 years old. We moved in with Granny when I was entering the 4th grade. Granny’s house became home to us for 5 years. The red dirt road and surrounding woods was our playground.
Our three-bedroom, white wooden house- with red shutters, sat bout 50 yards off the red dirt road. You could smell the iron ore in the air, from the dust that blew into the unsealed windows. This small house had wooden and laminate floors. The wooden walls had peeling, cloth wall paper and paneling. Our wooden home sat on cinder block sand was surrounded by towering cedar and oak trees, with one beautiful wisteria tree. The cedar trees were so large their limbs touched the ground. Their limbs created a canopy of shade and wall of protection from the red dirt road. Grass did not grow under these trees. The magnificent oak trees held a tire swing. This tire swing was held in place by a wire rope at least 20 feet up to the first branch.
The red dirt road was made of iron ore and lots of gravel. The ditches were dug out about three-foot-deep at a good 45-degree angle, on some areas of our road. When driving there was not many places to pass safely in my eyes. When our school bus and a log truck passed on our red dirt road, I sucked in my breath and prayed. From Granny’s house you could go left (west) on the red dirt road and end up on the paved road. The paved road would take us 5 miles North to our school or 75 miles South to the city we had left. If we headed to the right (East) from Granny’s house, the road was hilly and steep and led to another town, a cemetery and the dump (oh the dump is another story all together). Our road was used as a cut off road to the city, when the creeks flooded us in.
This hot Saturday morning we were playing in the wash shed trying to catch the momma cat. The wash shed sat off to the West of the house. This is where the washer and dryer were kept. Along with the deep freezers, old motors for boats, empty bottles, rakes, shovels, tills, lawn mowers and spider webs. A huge wooden table was covered in dust, mason jars for canning, miscellaneous tools, and kitchen utensils we had brought out side to dig up mud and look for bones. We could find anything we needed in the wash shed to build a club house, go kart or swimming pool.
The momma cat was pregnant and wouldn’t let us take care of her. We had a milk crate with a cushion in it, she just wouldn’t stay in the crate. Brother decided to go explore on his own. He took off behind the wash shed. We normally did not go behind the wash shed. For one, the washing machine drained back there. This was not the city. It drained straight onto the ground. Number two, we didn’t know what we would step on or find in the piles of empty beer cans and containers. The trees behind the wash shed were tall and wispy like bean poles. The limbs and vines entwined into rope like lattice above us and it looked like a jungle. We heard Brother hollering for us to come help him. Sister and I reluctantly got up and went to help. We had to pick our steps wisely. If we did not watch where we stepped, we would get our shoes muddy or lose our shoe completely in the mud pits.
When we reached Brother, he had an old push mower with no motor, just the frame. We worked together and pulled it out from behind the wash shed. When we returned to the milk crate the mamma cat was in it. Sister sat the milk crate, on the lawn mower. We found rope and tied the milk crate to the old lawn mower. Instant baby carriage, until the mamma cat jumped out. When the mamma cat jumped out, sister jumped in. We began to push her around the yard. Then we ended up on the road. To the right. The steep hill.
We started slow, pushing her down the hill and then letting go towards the end. The sound of the pebbles hitting the metal on the lawn mower was deafening. You could no longer hear the wind in the trees or the birds chirping. We barely could hear each other talking. We had to yell at each other. Brother was next, he got in and took off down the hill screaming for us to let go. So, we did. Off he went! Down the hill and to the bottom of the next one. Then my turn. I get into our go-kart ever so gently. Instructing them don’t let go. So much for my instructions. I get a push start. I am flying down the red dirt road on four wheels, praying that arrow prayer as fast as I could talk. I come crashing into the bottom of the hill in the ditch. No injuries. I survived.
We did this for hours. There were no cars on the road this glorious Saturday morning. We had us a go kart, and we were flying. Faster than any log truck ever could. We all took turns landing in the ditch. The vibration and sound of the pebbles hitting the lawn mower had made us hard of hearing and tired. Brother was taking off in the milk crate lawn mower as Sister and I chased him. We were barely hitting top speed flying down the hill and the sound that blasted through the trees and above the pebbles scared us all. It was the blast of a horn from a log truck. This bellowing booming sound meant get out of the way!! Our laughter turned into fear, as we all turned back to see a large empty log truck barreling at us. The log truck was so close you could see the face of the driver and him pulling the horn. It was over. We bolted and caught up with our go-kart lawn mower. This go around we all ended up in the ditch. As we scrambled up right, we realized the log truck was barely moving following us down the hill. As he passed by he leaned out of the window, smiling and waving. He yelled out, “Ya’ll won!”
We drug our milk crate lawn mower turned go-kart out of the ditch and headed home. We had survived another Saturday. We now knew lawn mowers could out run log trucks. This day we flew on faith and four wheels on our red dirt road.