Joey & Carla Link

May 22, 2019


We all need reminders/memorials of who God is, what He has done for us and how much He loves us. When trials come for your children when they are adults, these markers will strengthen them, reminding them of God’s faithfulness to your family when they were kids and the incredible blessing of how He met all of your needs.


One year our family was driving home from a conference in Cincinnati, OH.  We had many responsibilities at that conference including bringing the conference bookstore, so we took both our vans to carry all the product and our son Michael drove one of them. We stopped at the pastor’s home of the church who hosted the conference to thank him and his wife for all the work they put into it. As we were getting ready to leave, this pastor pressed a $20 bill into my (Joey’s) hand and told me about an ice cream parlor they were fond of and told us to take our kids there before we started the long drive home.


I was anxious to get on the road, and did not want to spend unnecessary time in an ice cream parlor but this was an unusual gesture from this gentleman who we knew well, and I didn’t want to offend him. When we found the place Carla and the girls piled out of the vans as Michael and I drove around and around the block because there were no parking spots available, waiting for them to make their choices. When they had the cones in their hands, the girls got in our old blue van Michael was driving and Carla was getting ready to get in our other van with me.


I was getting impatient waiting for Carla to get in the van. She was looking at the other van and I figured the kids weren’t getting along and she was waiting to see if they would settle down without her interference. She finally opened the door and asked me why there was smoke coming out from under the hood of the other van. We drove a few blocks back to the host church’s parking lot so I could get out and take a look. When I popped open the hood, to our shock the engine of the van Michael (a new teenage driver) was driving with his sisters as passengers was in flames!


Thankfully once we called our friend, he and other men came to the church and helped us as we were frantically unloading the bins in that van and they put them in a church storage room. We left the van there to be worked on. If we had given in to my impatience and had gotten on the road with no ice cream, we could have been out in the middle of nowhere with no place to leave our product when I or Michael finally saw the flames. Plus, this was in the day before cell phones and we could have been stuck waiting for someone to stop and help us while our van burned up.


Carla and I sat in our van and said a heartfelt prayer of thanksgiving as we realized Michael may not have noticed the flames until they came inside the van and we could have lost all our children. But thanks to our friend, Pastor Jim Holt and his $20 bill we were in a place where we noticed the smoke when it first started and where we could leave everything with good people who took care of everything we left behind. We put a $20 bill in our family’s memorial box to look at periodically and thank God that Pastor Holt listened to His prompting that day to insist we stop at a particular place to get ice cream and to remind ourselves of God’s protection and provision for us. We encourage you to set up your own God markers in a way that will remind your family of God’s faithfulness to you.



  • Do you have any memorial stones for your family?
  • Do your kids have any visual memorial markers of what future generations will see as the important history of your family?