You are in for a treat! My dad Hal Thompson will be sharing stories from his childhood for several days. Thank you so much for praying for him through his recent hospital stay. Dad is a missionary and pastor. You can find his ministry blogs at Teaching Truth Today or Enseñando las Escrituras. I have always loved listening to my Dad tell stories from his childhood and am thrilled to share them with you. His words below:
My father and mother told me that even as a young boy I had always been interested in horses. Every so often Mother would say to Dad, “Tell him about the time he hugged the back leg of that terrible mare,” and even though he had told me before, she would urge him to tell me again. So Dad reluctantly, almost embarrassed, would tell me the story. He would start off by telling me he couldn’t believe what he had witnessed.
He had used a team and wagon to drive around the outer edge of the ranch to carry posts and to fix fence. I remember going with him to do this more than once when I was “all grown up” at the age of five, but of course I don’t remember this particular event because they say I was two years old. Dad said I always wanted to go with him, but this time he didn’t take me. As usual, they were back at headquarters right at 12 o’clock. My mother always said she did not run a restaurant–meals were at a certain time, and if you were not there, you didn’t eat until the next meal. Dad and the couple of men who were working for him saw Mother run out waving a dish towel, indicating dinner was ready right then, so Dad did not unhook the horses and put them in the stall. He just drove the team up to a hitching post and tied them up.
The mare on the right side was a new horse which had not been trained and didn’t want to be trained. Her worst habit was that she would kick if anyone got close to her back end. She didn’t just kick straight back, but she could even kick sideways like a mule, as if she were sweeping the barn yard. As it turned out, she was never completely broken of the habit, and only the experienced horsemen were allowed to use her. When Dad tied the horses to the hitching post, still hooked up to the wagon, I saw him and went running all excited as fast as I could. This was a distance about as long as a football field.
After Dad and the men washed their hands, they were sitting at the table with ten or twelve others, when suddenly they noticed I was missing. Mother looked out the door and screamed, “Arthur, look where that child is!” Dad said I was wrapped around the back leg of that mare, sitting on her hoof. He was sure she was going to plaster me against the front of the wagon at any moment. He said he went with fear and trembling, wondering how he was going to get me out from under the mare. Somehow he talked to me in such a way that I unwrapped myself, crawled out from under her, patted her on the leg, and went running to him. Dad said it was a miracle. Mother said, “I thought you didn’t believe in miracles.” He replied, “Well, I did this time.”
This picture of Hal was taken in 1960. I was going to Biola in Los Angeles, California, and he was in his first year at Columbia Bible College (now Columbia University). We didn’t see each other that whole year, but wrote many letters. He had the picture taken to send to me.