“The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.” – Thomas Campbell
On this sunny morning, we list it out. “Paint the chicken coop,” he says, determined. “Clean the bathroom. Finish the typing. Run the laundry and control the chaos.” That’s me, chiming in.
The boys, they tease and pound and meander, needing direction. The sun, it burns hot as leisurely minutes tick away.
I think of the freshly-planted flowers in the front bed facing the road. The blooms and buds need to be plucked, encouraging further leafy growth. The flats that rest beneath the lean-to await planting, await their turn to march like messengers of cheer, splashing their color before the chicken coop. That needs to be painted.
Someone will till the garden so that Mother can walk the rows, spreading weed inhibitor that will mean less work later on in summer’s heat. In the evening, there’ll be a fire with meat sizzling loud above the flames. There’ll be green salad and Chocolate Eclair, a treat that evaporates like gasoline vapors on a hot, hot day.
Through all of it, there’ll be a yellow, battery-powered Hummer, darting here, darting there. It’s Little Schrock with his big ministry of joy, behind the wheel. He smiles, then laughs out loud as he follows those big boys around, tracks Daddy, watches the activity. I’m happy, just watching.
Today, doing these menial chores, tidying up, planting beauty, painting white, I stop for just a moment and breathe it in – freedom. The freedom that brings thousands to our borders every year. That’s birthed hopes and dreams in millions living in other lands. The freedom that’s been earned by men and women who fought. And died, many of them, blood spilling in foreign theaters.
I remember with solemnity and gratitude their sacrifice; the terrible, noble price paid freely for the peace in which we live. God bless their memory. God bless their families who sacrificed, too. God bless those who serve even now.
God bless America.
With special gratitude to SSG Travis Hunsberger, a local son and one of the fallen. Deepest thanks, too, to veteran Curtis Yoder (US Navy), and “our Marine (and cousin),” Staff Sgt. Daniel Miller.