A Day of Intervention

A Day of Intervention

A Day of Intervention

Slowly her eyes opened, she was glad her husband was still asleep. She eased out of bed, and was careful not to wake him, for she had endured enough of his wrath the night before, in a drunken rage, he had chased them all with a butcher knife, lashing at them, and she had shoved her children out the door to protect them.  They had heard everything, for their secret hiding place was up under the old farmhouse.

She quickly got dressed, and roused up the children, helping to get them cleaned and dressed. Early in the morning hours, exhausted, she had called each of her children from out underneath the farmhouse and put them to bed, dirty and tired. Her oldest daughter was a fierce protector, her son, a warrior, and her second daughter was a way to quiet, and her two littlest ones, were being scarred by their father’s behavior. Lord help me.

Today was church day, and they would all be going to hear Pastor Woodard. Today was also special because today she was giving her life to the Lord and trusting him for her future. Baptism awaited her, she was so excited, and she could hardly wait to get to church.

Thank goodness, it was a good cool fall day for the walk to church was long and hot in the summer months, today she welcomed the breeze upon her skin, and her little chicks followed her, with her carrying the littlest Elizabeth. About a mile down the road, the children started to talk, and cut up, for they knew they were far enough away from their father, that he could not hear them or hurt them. The children never talked about their dads drinking or abuse. It was a closed subject.

Annie believed in God, she had her family bible and she read it as much as she could, it brought her peace and comfort in hard and trying times.

Pastor Woodard preached a good sermon, and at closing, the baptism service began. The Pastor called her name, and as she stood in front of the church, her knees shook, and she felt scared, and as the Pastor words sunk into her ears, she felt comfort and peace. She stepped up to the Baptism pool, took off her shoes, and stepped into the tub. The Pastor said the words to her, that she had struggled to understand for so long, and she finally got it. Despite her sins, her unrighteousness, Jesus had died for her on that cross, because he loved her and wanted her to have an abundant life.  Slowly as she was buried in the tub of living water, she gave her life to Christ. When she came up out of the water, she felt so new, clean, refreshed, energized, and alive. Her torment was gone, her fear gone, she felt so comforted. She was now a child of God’s, and she praised him.

Back at home things were going in another direction, trucks and cars filled her yard, men were storming around her home, with white mask over their faces, carrying torches and shouting in rage, he had been warned, he had numerous beatings, today he would pay, they doused gasoline around the house, and set it on fire, and they burned my grandfather alive. The year was 1947.

Upon returning home, my grandmother found devastation and that she was a widow. My grandfather was laid to rest in Manning graveyard, in Pitt County. Having nowhere to live, her children were split up and sent to live with different family members with the youngest Elizabeth (my mother) staying with her, in a three-room shack she found off Greenville highway.

God carried her during this time, she missed her children, and she got a job and worked very hard to bring her family back together.

There is no doubt that God saved my grandmother and her children that day. As a family, we still do not know why my grandfather was murdered. We have assumptions and theories, yet the truth will never be known. Only God knows the truth. One truth we do know is God’s intervention is with us on that day of Baptism and saved my grandmother and her children. I wonder if it ever entered her mind what might have happened if they had all been home. Thank you, Jesus, that they were in your house, protected and watched over.

God Bless!



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