Thanking God for North Dakota
Hey Dad –
I spent some time away this past weekend. Much of the time it was just you and me, and we had a lot of time to talk. I will confess that more of the time I talked, and you listened. Together we spent some time in worship. That is the amazing thing about travel time. I can make a joyful noise to my heart’s content. There were much appreciated quiet times. It was during those silent moments that I was moved to tears. Your creation just does that to me.
Home is something that has been loosely defined by this girl with a nomadic past. My version of home can be the moment in a conversation where I realize how blessed I am by the company you have given me. Home will always be the emerald coast of Florida’s panhandle with snowy white beaches and all the memories and people of my childhood. The sanctuary of home is eternally wherever Daniel and our children waltz the delicate dance steps of life. Uncovering the treasures therein, my garden is one of the places where I feel closest to you; so home has to be found there as well.
I didn’t realize until my trip this weekend how much I realized that North Dakota feels like one step away from you and thus home. Sometimes, I think that heaven’s gate is just around the next field. I think my affirmation came when the tears began to well up in my eyes just marveling at the expansive sky and verdant fields. No place on earth does that to me like a highway in what some aptly call “God’s Country”.
I want to thank you for all the places I call home, and most specifically today, for the place called North Dakota. Thank you for a sky so large your breath is literally taken away by its beauty. Thank you for rich and fertile soil that grows such beautiful crops. That same rich soil is where we chose to return the shell of our son. His earthly resting place is in one with such beauty where ducks fly over, deer frolic, and prairie grasses whisper in the wind. Thank you for fields of sunflowers that could make any heart leap for joy. I praise you for the people of the Dakotas who are truly some of your finest masterpieces.
Thank you for creating the people that brought me to and who keep me tied to that prairie land. First it was my parents who transplanted a Southern girl to the plains and who created family all those miles away. Then my heart was lovingly anchored there by the Dakota boy I married as well as our extended family who keep me dreaming of the next visit.
Humbled, rejuvenated, connected, but most of all, loved, I am so thankful for the time I spent in the Red River Valley this weekend.
Thank you for creating North Dakota as a place where my soul finds rest.