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August 9, 2013

In a land of loving hearts

NORMAN — When I was a young boy, I had the privilege of living in a land of great beauty. This land was only two square miles in diameter, yet a place of magical quality — indeed, a land truly flowing with milk and honey.

Tall Georgia Pines and magnificent Oaks decorated with moss surrounded by budding Azaleas occupied this land. Early morning dew covered the ground, and the dew droplets reflected the sun’s rays in a spectacularly refreshing way.

Yet, this was not the real stuff this land was made of.

My family is big. I suppose by today’s standard, 15 children (four sets of twins) would be unprecedented. My dad was one of the twins, and so I was born into a wonderfully talented family whose roots can be traced all the way to Salzburg, Austria.

Yet, at around the age of 6, I found myself on shaky ground. My mom and dad had just divorced, so here I was, freckled face and skinny, uncertain, lost, fearful and in desperate need.

Enter in my wonderful aunts.

Exodus 3:8 states, “So I have come down to rescue them from the hand of the Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey …”

When I read this, I immediately recognized what God had done for me many years ago. He had delivered me to a good and large land, a land of loving gracious hearts.

On every corner, I found an aunt with open arms, willing to embrace me, love me, nurture me, care for me and yes, sometimes even discipline me. In this land I found a sure foundation. I was hard to love, for sure. I use to crawl under the pews during church services and pull on the ladies’ pantyhose. Ouch.

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