“Well,” I began after we climbed into the car that Friday night as we headed to the hotel, “that was a good one, too.”
“Yes,” Felicity agreed. “It was. What a sad view to believe.”
“Not much different from Post-Trib,” Steve observed. “In both cases, you get to die.”
* * * *
“There,” Steve said, setting the case in the trunk. “Mama packed an extra set of clothes for today.”
I nodded my head. “Alright,” I said as I checked to see his fingers were out of the way before shutting the trunk. “Everyone ready?”
We climbed in the car, prayed briefly for safety today, and started up. Backing the car up, I put it in drive and we wheeled out the parking lot.
“This glad morning since the night is o’er/ We’ll drive away,” Steve started our travel version of I’ll Fly Away. The children had one verse so far that they had modified (or murdered—not sure which).
“We’ll drive away, drive away (Oh glory!)/We’ll drive away/When night’s done (Hallelujah!) by and by/We’ll drive away!” they finished.
“Could we sing the real song?” Susie asked.
Felicity began the song in her alto voice, “Some glad morning…”
We sang all the way to the Martins’, and arrived about three minutes early.
“Good morning,” Ed greeted us as we walked to his door. Ruth, David, and the twins stood just behind him. Emily and Anna emerged from the kitchen.
“We take our shoes off,” Ed stated when I caught sight of seven pairs of socks standing around. “Keeps the house cleaner.”
“That’s what we think too,” I agreed as we took our shoes off. “We take our shoes off at home, too.”
Just then the Millers emerged from their various locations.
“Good morning,” Antoine declared. “You all are a little early.”
“A little, I guess,” I stated.
“But breakfast is almost ready,” he stated. “If everyone wants to head to the kitchen.”
We marched our way to the kitchen and sat down. After Ed led in prayer, I glanced around in the kitchen. Six adults: Ed and his wife, Emily; Antoine and his wife, Anna; and Felicity and I sat like islands among the sea of children: my three, Steve, Susie, and Joel; Ed’s five, Anna, David, Ruth, Rachel, and Rebecca; and Antoine’s six, Sharon, Adeline, Luke, Timothy, Lisa, and Esther.
The breakfast was well done: fried eggs, scrambled eggs (which was a good thing—Felicity and Susie both can’t stand fried eggs), sausage, biscuits, gravy, and hash browns. Condiments included ketchup, mustard, grape, peach and strawberry jelly, and butter. And to wash it down, the Martins had water, juice, or milk (including chocolate syrup—much to Steve and Joel’s delight). All ate well, and there was some leftovers, which, (upon Ed’s insistence), we agreed to take when we got back. Ed read two chapters from Revelation after breakfast.
After eating and reading, the sea of children (ranging in age from about eighteen to four)scattered throughout the house (and outside), while we adults prepared to leave.
Once dinner (uh—the noon meal, that is) was ready, Antoine called the children in to finish getting ready. “Remember to get extra clothes so you have dry ones,” Emily instructed. “Oh, by the way,” she added, turning to me, “do you need clothes?”
“Uh, no, thanks, we packed some,” I replied.
“Alright,” she smiled. “Just wanted to make sure.”
After everyone was ready, Ed led in prayer, and then we headed (after putting all those shoes on) to the vehicles.
We followed the Martins and the Millers all the way to Biloxi, and then all of us drove to the beach. It was somewhat difficult to find a spot, being a Saturday, but we finally did.
The rest of the day was spent there, with the typical activities. One time Antoine quoted a story I might have heard once or twice before:
Antoine was helping some of the boys put together a sand castle. After it was finished, he stood up and remarked, “Reminds me of the story about the scientists.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“Scientists told God, ‘With all our equipment and technology, we can do anything you can do!’” he began. “God said, ‘Okay, build a man.’ The scientists said, ‘Well, you built a man out of dirt, we’ll build a man out of dirt.’ God said, ‘NOPE! Get your own dirt!’”
We ate around one in the afternoon. The Martins had packed lunchmeat, cheese, bread, sandwich condiments, fruit, and Antoine and Ed left briefly to pick up ice cream. Since they offered, I went with them. We picked up ice cream sandwiches at Wal-Mart and returned about twenty-thirty minutes after we left.
After dinner (uh—the noon meal; well, maybe I should call it the afternoon meal), we played a bit more in the water, and then the children asked for a story. Antoine volunteered and then sailed off into a pirate story that I will try to share with everyone soon.
As the afternoon became late, we quickly cleaned up and changed our clothes. Then we left for the church, after stopping briefly at the Martins’ house for the leftovers. It had been a great day with fellow children of God, and we all were looking forward to this evening.