NEWS FROM THE HILLS

Twilight shakes a soft blanket of mist about the shoulders of our hills as night approaches at the close of this delightful June day. It has been a perfect day, with gentle breezes and warm sunshine—a tantalizing prelude to summer.

The fields and meadows are filled with masses of daisies that march down the sloping road banks and line the highways with their golden-eyed blossoms.

The air bears the scent of summer—the sweet smell of drying hay in the fields, a mingled fragrance of tangy wild onions and the honeyed scent of sweet clover. The sun beams down hotter on the early garden crops, spurring their growth after the recent rains. The leaves are full and green on the trees, and the hills themselves are garbed in varying shades of green.

Late evening is the best part of the day. Deepening shadows creep along the creek and darken in the hollows between the hills. Sitting on the porch, the cares of the day seem to melt away as we listen to the night sounds. Frogs croak in a never-ending chorus from the nearby branch that flows down to the creek. The querulous cry of a tree frog cuts through the growing darkness.

June is a month for nostalgia and remembering. It is a month of roses, daisies and vining honeysuckle. It is graduation time once again. Each year brings a new crop of eager graduates, proud and tearful parents, and relieved teachers.

Although we had no grandchild to graduate from high school this year, we did have three little girls who left elementary school (fifth grade) to enter junior high in the fall.

It was a beautiful and touching ceremony at Big Otter Elementary School as they gathered for the last time. Granddaughters Taylor and Belinda (Lynnie) Bragg, and great-granddaughter Molly Ann Bragg were in the graduating class. I must confess to a lump in the throat as we watched them take part in the program—our fledgling little birds taking another step toward leaving the nest.

They are growing up so fast, these little girls, and there is no way to shield them from the world. Now they are innocent, fresh and untouched, as they skip lightheartedly through their days, and my heart hurts at the thought of what will become of them.

They are growing up in a vastly different world than the one we grew up in as children. They are faced with pressures that we never dreamed of, and surrounded by a different atmosphere. They are much more advanced in knowledge, sophisticated in culture, and mature for their years. They are growing up in an unsettled world where crime and violence are rampant, corruption in government is commonplace, and wickedness abounds in high places.

So what do we as parents, and grandparents, do? We must pray. In this fast-changing world, the only unchanging thing is the Solid Rock, Jesus Christ. We pray for God to hold our young ones in His hands; we pray for their parents to have the wisdom to direct their children in the right way, to instill in them a love for God and His teachings that will lead them to salvation.

We pray for our precious children to find that Anchor early in their lives—that Anchor to the soul that holds us steady when the world is in turmoil. The measured beat of Time has brought us to June once more. It is a time for love, for memories, for living.  Let us make the most of it.

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We want to acknowledge more of our readers who have sent in song lyrics. Thank the Lord for readers who will take the time to respond to song requests.

We had an interesting letter from Imogene Wolfe of Dunbar, who went to church in a horse-drawn wagon to her grandfather’s funeral. They played “The Last Mile of the Way” on a pump organ. June adds a comment that I love, “I hope you live forever, or at least as long as I do!”

 

 

 

WHEN I’VE GONE THE LAST MILE OF THE WAY

When I’ve gone the last mile of the journey

And the burdens of life are laid down,

I shall stop at the portals of glory

And exchange the old cross for a crown;

All my trials will then be forgotten

It will all be one glorious day,

I shall praise the dear Savior forever,

When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

CHORUS:

When I have gone,

gone the last mile,

Heaven I view,

Heaven I view,See my dear Lord,

Savior and King,

Saved

and

guided me thru;

Heaven’s bright door

open will swing,

“Servant, well done,”

Jesus will say, “Enter in, live forever,

You have come the last mile of the way.”

(There is an alto lead that threads through the chorus.)

 

2.Many times when I’m laden with sorrow

And my burdens are heavy to bear,

Then I think of that wondrous tomorrow.

Where I’ll know no more heartache or care;

I shall join in that heavenly chorus,

Singing glad hallelujahs for aye,

I shall meet all those gone on before me

When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

 

3.Often times on the road I grow weary

And the milestones seem farther apart,

But I know my dear Savior is near me,

He’s been with me since I made the start;

O I know the bright lights of that city,

Soon will shine across the dark bay,

And I know my dear Lord will be waiting,

When I’ve gone the last mile of the way.

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Alyce Faye Bragg

She writes the "News From the Hills" column. Born and raised in the country, and still lives on the same farm where she was raised. Has a sincere love for nature and the beauty of the hills. Began writing in 1981 & currently has three books published. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer