On our way home from Milwaukee, Mark and I decided to swing down to Gettysburg to walk the fields where a huge part of our US history took place.  I wouldn’t call myself a “History Buff” but I do get a certain feeling when I am standing in a spot where our country had some of her major events take place.  Lexington and Concord, MA always gives me a sense of awe and pride.  Kaitlyn and Mark probably retained more of the facts during our tour of Gettysburg than I did; I usually stand in these places and close my eyes and picture the precious sons, husbands and fathers who fought with such gusto for the freedoms and privileges that I enjoy these many years later.  So much bloodshed for those who were held in bondage and slavery. One part of the auditory tour mentioned that the survivors could hear the wounded and dying calling out for family members.  As a mother, that just broke my heart.

I listened in on some of the visitors’ questions that were asked of the rangers re: the strategy of the battles. I was a little jealous of their interest in this part of the battles as I don’t understand most of what they are talking about.  For me, my biggest strategy is when should I wash the kitchen floor so I can get out of preparing supper?  And trust me, that takes many hours of careful planning, sketching out the floor plan, what type of mop or rag should I use, the conditions of the day: is it humid or dry, etc.  Washing the kitchen floor is no “fly by night” operation!

Standing at the Gettysburg National Cemetery and seeing the many, many graves of those brave soldiers that gave their lives for our country, it was one of the most solemn and touching moments of our visit.  And there were so many graves that simply had “unknown” on them.  And then….the Holy Spirit tapped me on the shoulder….and we had a little chat.

My Heavenly Father had a strategy from the moment sin entered the Garden of Eden.  Blood was shed to cover Adam and Eve in their sinful state.  Further on in the Old Testament, my Father’s strategy included the shedding of blood of lambs, bulls, doves for the covering of sin.  And then, praise God, the battle was nearing the end, the final shedding of blood took place on a hill.  And my Savior called out to his Father in his anguish!  And He gave His life to free me from my bondage and my status as a slave. I am not an “unknown” to my Father, He knows my name! In the Psalms, we are told that He knows our rising and our laying down, He knows our thoughts before they are even spoken. How fitting that I read in Galatians 4:6-7 that same evening the following: “Because you are His sons, God sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out “Abba, Father”.  So you are no longer a slave but God’s child and since you are His child, God has made you also an heir.”  Praise God!  Words escape me.  How can I ever thank Him enough for delivering me out of my status as a slave?  Thankfully I’ll have all of eternity to praise His Holy Name!  What can I do in the meantime?  Well Gal. 5: 1 tells me: “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”  Sounds easy, right?  But how often do I get myself yoked up with something that drags me down and feels burdensome?

I’m so grateful for the time spent on the road and visiting Gettysburg.  Who knew that an old battlefield could turn into a sanctuary where God and I met?