When Grant was two years old he lived in Beaufort. He remembers the park in Laurel Bay and his two-year-old birthday party when his dad got the fire truck on base to come down to their house for the afternoon. Pretty cool for a bunch of little boys, right? Grant has more memories in Beaufort. Good memories and bad memories. Grant remembers crying and finding out that he didn’t have a daddy anymore. His dad was a fighter pilot and died in a mid-air collision off the coast of Georgia. While Grant didn’t know those details, he does remember receiving his dad’s flight helmet at the Beaufort National Cemetery.
Grant remembers visiting Beaufort when he was seventeen years old to see his dad’s memorial for the first time since he was a little boy. He remembers meeting me. Supposedly, he wanted to date me then but thought that “Dr. Broggi” would never allow it. I’m not so sure he thought that then, but he says he does and Grant never tells a lie. I remember meeting him too. I remember that he was wearing cowboy boots and a maroon button up shirt, and khakis and he acted shy around me. And of course I remembered his name, because it’s not a very common one and my brother shares the same. Grant also remembers that my dad taught on false prophets that Sunday and that it was one of the best sermons he’d ever heard.
When I visited Grant’s parents’ house in Midland last year before we got married I read one of Grant’s prayer journals. He wrote down a list of places that helped him feel close to the Lord. Number one or two on the list was Beaufort. He also prayed that God would give him a future wife whose heart would be “prepared for ministry.”
When Grant joined the Marine Corps right out of college (before we started dating) he put Beaufort as his number one choice to be stationed. He didn’t get it. He got Japan instead. But before long he did get a Beaufort girl. The day before we got married, Grant held a memorial service in honor of his father at the Beaufort National Cemetery for family and friends. It was very special to see how things had come full circle. Here we were, back in the same place his dad and mom had been so many years ago. And here Grant was, no longer a little boy grieving his father’s death by an empty marker, but a grown man honoring his dad and his family not just by his words, but by his life.
We got married in Beaufort. I said during the preparation of our wedding that I seriously doubted that my wedding day would be “the best day of my life” as so many girls make it out to be. But it was. It was that good. God had brought us together and at the altar when I pledged my life to Grant forever I slipped the same ring on his finger that his mom had slipped on his dad’s finger many years ago – the bond that only death broke. And as I put that ring on his finger, I knew that only death would ever break our covenant before God.
So why all these thoughts about Beaufort? It’s just been what going through my head all day long.
See – Grant and I are moving this summer. When we filled out our preferences we knew where we wanted to go. Would we dare ask? Was it too much to hope for? But as I read last night in Genesis 18, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”
Nothing is too hard for the Lord. It’s just a matter of what the Lord decides. The Lord decided to send us to Beaufort. We are so excited.