Giving thanks

Published 5:19 am Wednesday, November 23, 2016

At the ripe old age of 25, my heart fairly burst with pride and love for my two beautiful children and wonderful husband. Our tradition of spending Thanksgiving at my grandparents’ farm continued when my babies were small. The women bustled about, putting finishing touches on all the marvelous food we would soon share.

The men of the family kept a blazing fire going while swapping stories. Laughter of the children rang out as they scampered in and out letting the screen doors slam behind them. With aunts, uncles, and cousins filling almost every nook and cranny there were always plenty of eyes to watch out for the little ones. With such a large gathering it seemed almost absurd that any of our brood could be lost or in harm’s way.

Suddenly an overwhelming fear clutched at my heart and I knew I must find Robby as quickly as possible! My 3-year-old was in danger! The intensity of the feeling caused me to begin a frantic search for my baby. With so many adults around to keep a watchful eye on the children my fearful expression was met with a knowing grin that young mothers can be overprotective.

I ran from room to room searching for Robby.

“Robbo, where are you honey?”

“Please answer Mama!”

“Jan, calm down, he is probably in the back bedroom with some of the other kids. He was just here a minute ago. It’s ok,” my cousin Laurie, said soothingly.

All the reassurance in the world could not dissuade me. I instinctively ran across the acreage toward the highway screaming as I ran. “Robby! Robby!” My voice sounded far away, and I felt as if I was moving in a slow motion even though I ran as fast as I could.

Just as the highway came into sight a big 18-wheeler rumbled by. There on the other side of the highway stood my beautiful, blue-eyed angel looking intently at his mama. My legs could hardly carry me across the road. I knelt in the sandy soil and threw my arms around my child weeping uncontrollably.

“Thank you, God. Thank you, God.”

The voice of God that day, even though I never heard a word, had been so strong in my spirit that I knew Robby was in danger. I knew not to listen to anyone else because the truth was imprinted on my heart.

This year as I take time to give thanks for all my blessings I am especially thankful that God saved my baby boy all those years ago.

Jan Penton Miller can be reached at