When men get home from the service, or come home on leave, they are usually is really good shape…and as most of us know, boys will be boys, and men will be men…meaning when issued a challenge, each wants to prove that they are better, stronger, or more capable of something than the other. Such was the case with my dad, Allen Spencer and my uncle, George Hushman. The two of them were at my grandparents, George and Hattie Byer’s house, and somehow the challenge was made to see who could do the most pushups. Dad and Uncle George were good friends, and this was to be a friendly challenge between two future brothers-in-law. Nevertheless, it was going to be a challenge.
The two men laid down on the floor. It had been decided that two men in military condition would not find it much of a challenge to do a bunch of pushups. No, there had to be a way to make this a real challenge. In the end they seated the two kids who were the closest in size, Aunt Dixie and Aunt Sandy, on their backs in order to do the pushups. That was not the only challenge they faced, either. These pushups had to be done in a specific and rather hard way. As the men pushed down, the girls weight was a challenge, and as they came up, the fact that they had to very quickly clap their hands together mid-pushup, and without losing the girl on their back made it even harder.
As Aunt Sandy told me the story, I could tell that the whole thing had left quite an impression on her. Being the youngest child, she thought of the brothers-in-law as brothers all her life, and these two taking such a challenge, must have made her think that they were very strong…and maybe they were. I also think that the girls had to have been fairly small, but then I couldn’t even attempt push ups in the way they did them that day. I suppose it is possible that they found additional strength in trying to impress their girls, my mom and Aunt Evelyn. Either way, I think it was a challenge.
Aunt Sandy didn’t say who won the challenge, and maybe she doesn’t even recall after all these years. I don’t think that the winner was as impressive as the challenge itself. I suppose that they could have called it a draw in the end too. Either, way, Aunt Sandy will never forget the day that she and her sister Dixie became part of a military push up challenge. Of course, it might have been something that was talked about for months or even years after. It was after all and challenge, and deserving of attention, and Aunt Sandy was a little girl who was impressed with her future brothers-in-law.
Everyone who has ever attended a family reuinion knows that it is a wonderful way to reconnect with family who live far away. Sometimes these can be people you have never met before, like new spouses and children. It can be so much fun to get to know everyone, but there is also another aspect of the reunion, that isn’t so much fun…saying goodbye at the end. Reunions, while a lot of work, really enjoyable and informative, nevertheless, always end too soon. You make new friends, and then they are gone, and you have to try to keep up with them long distance. It seems like an easy thing, but everyone is busy, and it is hard to keep up, even with the very best of intentions. If you have the chance to attend a reunion, I highly recommend that you make the time and take that journey down memory lane.
Those reunions bring generations together, some for the first and last time. There is never a guarantee that you will see people again when you part, but when they are elderly, the chances are even greater that the family member will pass before you get a chance tp see them again. Such was the case with Bob’s grandfather, who passed away less than two months after that reunion. I was so thankful that he had the chance to meet, what I believe were his first two great grandchildren. I’m sure that was a special to him as it was to me. My only regret was that before we could make the trip to see them again a little over two months later, he was gone. We couldn’t have taken our trip sooner, but I have always wished we could have.
I like reunions more now than ever before, because I know their real value. I will never forget Bob’ grandfather. He was a sweet, loving man, who was a pleasure to be around. We were able to go on our trip to Washington to visit Grandma, and she was able to come back here for a vicit, and a chance to meet three more more great grandchildren. We have treasured those visits from that time forward. Still, those visits ended the same way as that first reunion…with the need to say goodbye, and that is the saddest part of it all. I really hate goodbye. It is a very sad word. I don’t like having people move away and go back home if they don’t live here. I simply don’t like saying goodbye.
A couple of months ago, I lost a pin that I really liked. It had 2 Calla Lillies on it and it was delicate and beautiful. I searched high and low for it, at work, in my car, and at home. I couldn’t find it anywhere. Being a Christian, I believe that the devil has no right to steal things from me. I believe that God takes care of me and my things. His word promises me that I have power over the devil, and since the devil came to steal, kill, and destroy, what was happening to me was wrong. I prayed over my pin, telling God that He knew where it was and asked Him to reveal it to me.
During the next couple of months, I thought about my pin often, but it still had not been returned to me. I had not had to stand this long for a lost item before, and I wondered what to do about that. I know faith works, and I didn’t want to pull back my faith, and yet, I had no pin. I just kept putting it out of my mind.
Yesterday as I was getting some things out of my car after work, my attention was caught by something at the back edge of the driver’s side seat. There, staring me in the face, was my pin. I was ecstatic!! I wanted to jump up and down. I knew God would never let me down, so if the pin had never been returned, I would have to face the fact that I had failed in my faith stand. I really hadn’t much thought about the pin, and certainly not enough to be pressured to pull back my faith with some silly remark about how I guessed it wasn’t going to be returned. I had simply put it out of my mind for the most part. But, God is faithful. And words are alive. The words spoken in faith two months ago, were not forgotten by God, He didn’t put it out of his mind by saying it was too hard. No, God and I are in covenant, and He never takes that lightly. I, His child, had spoken in faith, and managed for two months not to pull back my faith, so God in His never-changing, perfect sense of responsibility and obligation to perform His word, did His part and brought it to pass.
My pin returned, I went about the rest of my day with a lighter heart and an ever growing understanding of how true to His word my God is. Thank you Father, for your faithfulness to me. I know that my God loves me and cares about every area of my life, from the biggest to the smallest detail. How awesome is that? I can roll the care of anything in my life over onto God, and He is faithful to supply every need, and even cares about my desires. Every little thing in my life is important to God, because He loves me and we are in covenant together. God always keeps up His end of the bargin.