Here is a picture I received from Christine, the Mocksville Town Manager, showing Pastor and I as we departed from the Town Hall on Day #26 of the walk.
Day #26 of my walk proved to be mixed with physical pain and suffering on the one hand and manifold blessings on the other. After approximately four miles into the day, and after pressing up a steady incline, I suffered what I recognized to be a shin splint on my right leg. This, coupled with my already weak knee, began to work on my mind in a negative way. The pain was so intense, my vision was adversely affected, and the high humidity, resulting from the previous night’s rain, was not a friendly companion.
I managed to walk into Mocksville to meet with Mayor Slate. Since he is a retired MD, I asked him for his advice, and he could only suggest “rest.” That did not seem to be an option, since my schedule required me to walk another 10 miles for the day. I agreed that if the condition were to worsen enough, I certainly would be forced to rest, and that, indefinitely.
Persevering in prayer, and with great determination, I began the grueling walk towards Statesville. After making another 3 miles or so, totaling 7.66 (on my phone app), I told Barb I did not know if I could make it much farther. I could tell my wife was suffering with me, and she did not want me to seriously injure myself, and neither did she want to discourage me from my resolve — that can be a most uncomfortable state to be in.
The terrain that I am now walking is hilly and more challenging to different muscles. I had fairly mastered the level ground, but now with these ups and downs, things were becoming more complicated. It was hurting my leg about as much to go down a hill than up one. I decided to creep along, even if I only walked one mile per hour, I reasoned that I could potentially finish my course for the day.
Oh, how I prayed! I repeated promises such as, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me the strength.” I sang songs; I chanted, “Left, right left… and step, step, step by step” over and over. Just when I was almost ready to cave in to the flesh, a person would stop and offer cold water or tell me how they appreciated what I was doing. I counted 14 such encounters along the road on Day #26. You see, God has a way of sending “angels in the form of men” to minister to the struggling child of His. And with added encouragement, I marched forward with joy in my heart.
I think I was at 13.5 miles when I came to a place where I could sit down and rest for a spell. It was there that we met Charli and her grand-daughters. They were smiling and enjoying the day; Charli was very supportive of our causes and even offered us some ice cream, though we declined gracefully. With only 1.5 miles to go, I still had reservations about whether I should continue on.
And, as I arose from the bench where I had been taking a rest, the pain in my shin seemed to be doubled. But, I thought, “I must finish my course!” Barb was inclined to have me cut it short and not cause serious injury, but I opted to carry on. The first half mile was probably the worst suffering that I can recall since the early days of this walk near the outer banks. It was as if Satan had full sway — a permission from the Almighty to test my resolve.
I prayed as a little child crying out to a trusted Father, “Help me, Father, help me, Father!” After the half mile, the pain subsided, and I began to pick up the pace a bit. Then, I saw what appeared to be the last hill to climb, and my determination overcame all doubts of success. As I topped the last knoll, I saw the pace car in the distance, and knew I was nearly “home.” But, God had one final blessing for me before reaching the end point. I heard someone calling to me and turned to see three people approaching. It was an encounter to remember all my days, and their sweet spirits blended with mine in fellowship. It lasted so long that Barb noticed from afar and came walking to join the revival. After exchanging pictures, I made the last easy steps to Ridge Road and the end of the 15 miles for Day #26.
With tears in my eyes, I can only say, “Thank You, Father, for helping me in my time of need.” Now, I need a special healing in order to be ready for Day #27 on Monday. Thankfully, I have two days off for recovery. Yes, as usual, the Sabbath comes as a welcomed guest again. Thanks to all for your faithful prayers. 🙂
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Day #26 Presentation to Mayor Francis Slate, Mocksville, NC
At 9:00 AM we met Mayor Francis Slate at the Mocksville, NC town hall. He is in his 90s and got up earlier than usual this morning so he would not miss meeting with us. We enjoyed conversing with him.
We also met the Town Manager, Christine Bailey, who shared interest in the walk across America.
Day #26 Pastor Chick walks through Mocksville, NC, saluting Americans along the way.
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Day #26 A couple more Interests near end of walk
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While I was parked at Formac Automotive, three men came out to find out more about the walk and to encourage Pastor Chick: Thomas Wooten, Norman Forest, and Chip Essic.
Almost 1 mile left to go and Pastor Chick sat down to rest his legs. Charlie and her two granddaughters came to visit – and offered to buy ice cream.
Pastor Chick explained the reasons he stays away from sugar.
Very close to the stopping point, three members of the same family hurried out to meet Pastor Chick – Beverly, her son David, and her daughter,Rebekah. He had already been seen walking and they were excited to speak to him about the causes. They are on the same page.
Less than 1/2 mile further down the road, the walk for the day ended at Ridge Road.
After eating, Brenda Blevins and her daughter, Sharon, along with Sharon’s two children adopted from Russia, Krissy and Alex, expressed sincere interest in our walk. Brenda’s husband was a Vietnam veteran and he died last year from Agent Orange. She strongly encouraged us to enjoy the walk and our time together.
Day #26 Encounters
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After leaving the mayor’s office, we met Reginald Guyton, who is a Jehovah Witness. We had an interesting talk. He plans to find us on FB and converse more.
Later a highway patrolman drove up by the car and asked what the Liberty Petition is about. After some discussion about it, he said that all we can do is just keep doing what we are doing.
Andy, who had seen Pastor Chick walking in Raleigh, stopped to give him some water as well as something to eat. Having previously been the head attorney for Golden Corral, he took some interest in the Liberty Petition.
Another officer met us at a service station to make sure Pastor had all he needed. He was very interested and supportive of the walk, stating that most people in the county would be also. He said that Pastor Chick made his day and that if he needs anything, he is welcome to flag down an officer and the officer will be happy to help him.
Another man, John Mastin, drove up by the car and passed this message to Pastor Chick through Barbara “Thank you for what you are doing.” He is from California and has settled into Mocksville, NC.
While parked alongside the road, a very unique visitor came to the door, trying to get my attention!
Day #25 Pastor Chick Stops to Talk about the Flag, Etc.
Day #25 The Blessing of Free Haircut
After finishing 14.7 miles, we returned to Bailey’s Barber Shop. Mike, the owner, is another one that came out to greet Pastor Chick as he walked by. He asked Pastor Chick ‘Are you the one I have been hearing about all day that is walking across America?’. Mike gave Pastor Chick a free haircut.
Day #25 Note: Please click on the picture more than once to see all photos.
Pastor Chick departed from Lexington and walked towards Mocksville, NC.
I, Barbara walked with him today for almost 7 miles (with many breaks returning to drive the car).
We passed by the Leonard Laundromat, where Judy, Jennifer, and El came out to greet us. They had seen Pastor Chick walking earlier and wanted to shake his hand. They are very pleased with the cause.
Down the road a short distance, a car that had driven past us turned around and came back to greet us and take pictures. In the car were Jess, Trent, and their dog, Shepherd.
Sheila Tuttle drove up behind the car to leave a bottle of water and something to eat for Pastor Chick. As we were talking, Pastor Chick caught up to us and Sheila was able to greet him personally.
Another place I parked the car was by a mini-flea market. The two men working there, Robert Thompson and Brad Dunn, showed keen interest as they listened to Pastor Chick tell them about the flag and what it represents, how to regain self-respect, and other things.
As we were getting close to Mocksville, we met Jeff Wright, a pastor, who told us that he will pray for us every night and follow our progress. He went home and told his mother. She cried and sent him to buy a case of bottles of water to give to Pastor Chick. Jeff told me that Pastor Chick, walking across America, has made him proud to be an American. Pastor Chick had explained to him that the American flag represents we, the people, not the government. It also represents Jesus Christ, as he stands for liberty and justice for all. Red represents his blood, white represents purity, and blue represents royalty.
Pastor Chick arrived at his stopping place after 14.7 miles. As Pastor Chick was giving his report of the day on video, Julius Suiter stopped to give his support and encouragement.
Day #25 – Pastor Chick Reports