It was a sunny day on the drive back from Santa Maria, California. I had been visiting with my kids. It was always hard leaving them. We never seemed to have enough time together, but I was learning to cope with it.
I found a little hideaway where I would often stop and take a break from the drive. There is a park south of Santa Barbara across the freeway from the Big Yellow House Restaurant. It was a nice little spot. The park was nestled high above the beach overlooking the ocean. You could see almost a hundred miles in either direction. After sunset, the oil platform lights looked like diamonds set in black velvet water. The sun sparkled through palm leaves and sage brush that shrouded the long inclined path to the beach.
When I reached the beach, I was surprised to see hundreds of large boulders all over the place. They protect the beach from erosion during the winter storms. Instead of trying to climb over several hundred yards of boulders, I found a little secluded place close to the bank on the rocks at end of the path. Several people came and went without noticing me and that was just fine. I enjoyed the solitude and the rhythm of waves, but this day was going to be different, a special delivery was on its way.
After a while the last person left the beach. I was getting ready to leave as well and then it happened. A father and his son walked down the path. The father was a young man, strong and tall. His son was blond headed and not more than four or five years old. He barely came up to his dads belt. They walked hand in hand up to a big boulder. I almost laughed when the little boy threw his head back to look up at the huge stone. I couldn’t hear exactly what he said, but it was something like, “Wow dad thats a really big stone, how are we going to get to the ocean?” His dad just smiled and said, “No worries son, I got this. Want to go for a ride?” The father swooped his son up in his arm and climbed the first boulder. Then leaped from one boulder to the other. I can still hear that little boy’s laughter with each leap almost screaming with delight. There was no fear, just pure joy and the kid loved it.
When they leaped to the last boulder closest to the ocean, the father put his son down and sat down beside him. He then began to point out at the ocean and talk to him and point some more. Then they just sat together and looked at the ocean and took in the sites. After a while, the father put his arm around his son pulled him close and kissed him on the head. This was such an intimate moment. I almost felt as if I were intruding. A little while longer they got up and bounded back to the path, but I lingered a few more minutes to regain my composure.
As I waited, I felt that still small voice begin to speak to me. He said, “I am your father and you are my son. Your life seems strewn with boulders that you can’t climb, but don’t worry I am bigger than all your boulders. I am going to hold you and lift you up and carry you over all the obstacles in your life. Then at the end of it all, I am going to sit you down beside me and show you all the wonders that I have done. So don’t worry about how big the boulders are just hold on tight, trust me, and enjoy the ride.”
copyright 2014 Ed Thomas