I was struck by the stillness of the old homeplace where this swing hung motionless
on a long, long dusty porch.
I was amazed at the longevity of these handmade, original log gutters that run the length of the porch and and empty into a cistern. I'm not sure that much water reaches the cistern now because of straw and leaves filling the gutters.
If these walls could talk, the stories would be endlessly woven together with happy times, sad times, and God's presence. It's a special place to me for several reasons. I have fond memories of visiting the services held here many years ago, and I can still hear Aunt Ollie's beautiful, clear voice as she led the small congregation in old hymns. In a corner of the peaceful churchyard, she and six other family members were laid to rest - among them, Aunt Sallie.
Aunt Sallie lived not far from the church and spent many happy hours in her little house in the woods . . . making sassafras tea, hunting, gardening and enjoying her quiet life. She's been gone a long, long time, but the cistern she used still stands . . . sturdy and strong . . .
just like Aunt Sallie!
We drove for miles, not meeting one vehicle . . . just enjoying the quietness, the simple beauty of the wildflowers, the abundance of grapes and huckleberries, the longleaf pines, and cool, clear creeks.
Solitude and the beauty of God's awesome creation are good for the soul! We returned home feeling blessed to have visited the past but also to have been so keenly reminded of God's mercies and blessings that are new every morning! The God who met with that small group of people at Good Hope Baptist Church long before I was born and who was so real to Aunt Ollie and Aunt Sallie is still alive and well!
No doubt about it . . . we saw Him on those backroads!