Tue. Jun 18th, 2024
© Vickey Stamps 7-2-10
A hand reached down to help the old man up.  A voice, soft, spoke to the man.
“We can do this Son, together we can do this!”  The old soldier’s hat was
sometimes tri-cornered.  Other times it became a helmet. The landscape
continually changed around the two of them.   He had started out on the trip
much younger, vigorous and with hope in his heart.  Family and farm had
been left far behind, numerous long years ago…  What had been months of
battle had become so much more than that.  Now the dusty robes belonging
to the hand, became that of The Christ, who slipped down to sit and rest
beside him for awhile.
The patriot had started out, musket in hand.  At a different point in history,
he’d retrieved the ragged old red, white and blue flag, from a fallen comrade.
He carried it in a special place on his side, opposite that of the one holding
the musket.  The flag was precious.  It could not hit the ground.   
Sometimes the old flag had only thirteen stars upon it, and the white looked
almost grey from the trauma of all that had gone before, in all the great
efforts to sustain its cause.  Sometimes the red appeared more a darkened
pink and the flags edges became frayed and were unraveling.  On it waved.
In the blink of an eye, the flag held fifty stars and proudly waved its stripes
in vivid displays to encourage those who saw it.
The soldier’s feet hurt, for the soles of the shoes had worn down to nothing
more then a thin lining, binding the shoe together.  There had been so many
rugged roads of time on which he had walked.  Newspapers were layered
inside to keep the coolness of the earth from his feet.  He didn’t know how
much longer he could go on without better clothing, for his own, were dirty,
tattered and torn.  He became so weak from his travels that he would
stagger and fall, but always, he kept a firm grip on both flag and musket,
always he  watched closely for the enemy that sought to take the freedom
which he treasured.  Sometimes his friend, The Christ, with such love in his
eyes, helped him up, and they would walk through another period of time.
Other times like today, he became too tired and the Lord would sit down
with him and they would visit for awhile.
They’d always traveled together, this aging, ageless pair.  There causes
were the same in many ways.  Where he battled for a life without the evils
of tyranny, so fought the Lord.  Where he wanted mankind to always know
of faith, hope and charity, so had his friend, The Great Creator.  He wanted
freedom from evil for all eternity.  And, so did The Master.  So they sat and
talked with one another there on the dusty road of life.  “I don’t know how
I’d have managed without you, the old soldier spoke.  “We have been
together for such a long time.  You’ve been my strength, and my hope.
You’ve given me courage when I lost my own.  You are everything.
Just let me rest a few moments more, and we will travel on.  Do you never
tire of caring for me and your other children?  I think not!  I’m going to
close my eyes now.  I’ll hang onto my old musket, Lord, but could you take
the flag for awhile.  In you we trust.  In God we trust.  God Bless American.
Let freedom ring!”
Life was good!

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