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Helen's Mulberry Lane Farm Journal

Father's Day, June 20, 2021

"Look what I got, Grandpa!"

I quote from Father and Son by Philip E Howard, the grandfather of Elisabeth Elliot. The son that is spoken of was her father.

"A sensitive, timid little boy, long years ago, was accustomed to lie down to sleep in a low trundle-bed, which was rolled under his parents' bed by day and was brought out for his use by night. As he lay there by himself in the darkness, he could hear the voices of his parents, in their lighted sitting-room across the hallway, on the other side of the house. It seemed to him that his parents never slept; for he left them awake when he was put to bed at night, and he found them awake when he left his bed in the morning. So far this thought was a cause of cheer to him, as his mind was busy with imaginings in the weird darkness of his lonely room.

After loving good-night words and kisses had been given him by both his parents, and he had nestled down to rest, this little boy was accustomed, night after night, to rouse up once more, and to call out from his trundle-bed to his strong-armed father, in the room from which the light gleamed out, beyond the shadowy hallway, 'Are you there, papa?' And the answer would come back cheerily, 'Yes, my child, I am here.' 'You'll take care of me tonight, papa, won't you?' was then the question. 'Yes, I'll take care of you, my child,' was the comforting response. 'Go to sleep now. Good night.' And the little fellow would fall asleep restfully, in the thought of those assuring good-night words.

A little matter that was to the loving father; but it was a great matter to the sensitive son. It helped to shape the son's life. It gave the father an added hold on him; and it opened up the way for his clearer understanding of his dependence on the loving watchfulness of the All-Father. And to this day when that son, himself a father and a grandfather, lies down to sleep at night, he is accustomed, out of the memories of that lesson of long ago, to look up through the shadows of his earthly sleeping place into the far-off light of his Father's presence, and to call out, in the same spirit of childlike trust and helplessness as so long ago, 'Father, you'll take care of me tonight, won't you?' And he hears the assuring answer come back, 'He that keepeth thee will not slumber. The Lord shall keep thee from all evil. He shall keep thy soul. Sleep, my child, in peace.' And so he realizes the twofold blessing of a father's goodnight words."

2006 Family Reunion

I dedicate this post to my husband and father of my ten children, Gerald. I cherish the memories of watching him father our children. He was loving and kind, as in the above quote, always there for them. And even now, when they call for help, he drops everything and helps. Gerald is a meek man, but he is not a weak man. He stands firm on principle and truth and I really respect him for that strength.

Now as grandfather to twenty-eight, he is the same man to them as he was to his children. He can often be seen on a Sunday afternoon with two, three or four grandchildren on his lap, all talking at once, to ask him questions about the world, or just share their latest news.

Gerald keeps a notepad in his shirt pocket.
The grands like to write in it.

To Gerald, my hero, my confidante, my lover, my co-worker, my provider, my counselor, my analyst, my advisor, and so many other things, but most of all my best friend! Happy Father's Day, Ger!

Meeting little Marko (Rebekah's baby) for the first time.



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