Yesterday morning our last horse, Misty, died. My wife saw her laying down in the pasture, went out to investigate, and found she had died during the night. Misty had seemed perfectly normal the day before.
We’ve had horses since we moved into our house December 1991. We started with Ace and Joker (an Arabian and an Appaloosa), and then we bought Lady and Tigger (two wonderful ponies). Over time we gathered an assortment of strays who were put out to pasture in our back yard: King, Belle, Dakota, Shaq and others.
Misty was a gift to our daughter on her twelfth birthday. And now she was dead.
I don’t know why her death affected me as it did. I never connected with her. Mostly I fed her hay in the winter and held her halter when the blacksmith trimmed her hooves.
My wife interrupted me during my prayer time to say that Misty had died, and the first words out of my mouth were: “It’s the end of an era.”
“My wife’s ninety-year-old mother died last Thursday and we mourn. Someone reminded me that when we grieve, “we do not grieve like those who have no hope.”
I grew up in a family that camped. My father was a pastor who got four weeks of vacation. We took all four weeks at once, camping the whole month of July, mostly in wooded campsites next to windy lakes. We strapped our small Sunfish sailboat on top of our sagging station wagon.
Williamson Family Vacation, July 1968
Those vacations were a young boy’s fantasy, filled with mysterious forests and stormy seas. Four weeks wasn’t enough. We hauled our home wherever we went. It was often hot, but sometimes cold, and occasionally rainy. The car always broke down. And I loved it.
The difference between Christians and the rest of mankind is not a matter of nationality, language, or customs. Christians do not live apart in separate cities, speak any special dialect, nor practice any eccentric way of life…
For them, any foreign country is a motherland, and any motherland is a foreign country.