Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A Thousand Hills

      I just returned from visiting with siblings and aunts in North Mississippi. The Bible speaks of God’s ownership of cattle on a thousand hills. As usual, my mind turns to a different tune. I relate this ownership as vast wealth. On my trip I was thinking of the thousand hills in our lives. Surely there are many hills and valleys, hurts, sorrows and thankfully joy. Our Aunts Lizzie and Eula are having a lot of health valleys these days but they own many cattle. They possess great wealth in the love and admiration from “Johnnie’s kids”.

      Brother Norman and Niece Cheryl visited the church of our childhood and the home of our family’s final resting place. We shared a few of our happier childhood memories. Founded in 1852, it is such a beautiful and serene place. Cheryl and I agree, “A place to sit and soothe one’s soul”. Many of our hurts and disappointments seem to melt into thanksgiving at being a part of this historical place.

       Just like churches, families also have mixed histories. They disagree; wound each other and often even fracture. But they can find the way, through the Grace of God to re-establish anew.

      It has been said our lessons from history are unlearned. It is my prayer that we begin to learn and make better families and thereby a better world to live in.

      We all own cattle on a thousand hills. Memories just fade sometimes. Remind us Lord.

....... for every animal of the forest is mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.
Psalm 50:10 (NIV)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Lovers of the Sea

     Just about everyone in our family are lovers of the sea.  One particularly beautiful blue sky day, it hit me just how much the Lord must love the color blue.  If you think about the blue skies and blue seas, blue covers the majority of the earth.  Not so surprising, blue is the favored color of both men and women. (desktoppub.about.com/od/choosingcolors)

     I remember the first time I stood on the beach as a young girl. (Not so very long ago!) I was awestruck at the vastness.  The moment my eyes set upon the Pacific Ocean in San Diego I instantly became a lover of the sea.  When you gaze upon a body of water that stretches farther than the eye can see, you realize how small you are in this universe.  Someone once said when you begin to feel indispensable, stick your hand in a pail of water and pull it out.  As the water immediately fills the space of your hand, you will see just how significant your space in this world is.

Andrea our California Gal
      I would have to say the most adamant lover of the sea in our family is niece Andrea.  She is as competent and successful in her journalism career as she is in life.  Accomplished in any area she endeavors, but always makes room for her "board" meetings most every day.  The girl has her priorities.

    It is past time to revisit my first sea love. I have grown very homesick for her. We will as always, receive as much joy cheering her on as Dre' hangs ten.  As for aunt, I would probably break all ten.  (sigh)

Psalm 19:1-4: "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hope Restored


       Wow! What a busy week it has been. I can hardly believe it is Thursday night already! Monday was spent on yard work. It seems every year it grows in size. Do you think my legs are growing shorter? Tuesday we were excited to have Dan's brother Alan stay overnight with us. Wednesday was a day filled with meetings. Friday and Saturday nights are both fund raising events. Sunday there will be worship of course and a celebratory gathering of friends for a wedding shower. Plans are then for my travel to visit with siblings and two of the greatest aunts ever!

      With all of the events of the week, today has been one of my very best of days. Two young ladies with the love and support of family realized they could parent their children. Words cannot describe how hope can totally rejuvenate one. The opportunity to watch the metamorphosis of one that is brokenhearted and hopeless to come to a place of joy, peace and hope restored, is a blessing beyond measure.

      I realized just how busy I had been when I found my husband, the high tech hater, sitting at my desk struggling to send his very own emails! He thinks he could become quite efficient, if he just didn't have to sit still! Good job Danno! 

Lam 3:25 (NIV) The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him, to the one who seeks Him.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sabbath Day

    Even though I started the day off by pouring cereal into my coffee cup, it was a great morning!

Worship time then a table for ten with good friends at TaMolly's for lunch; life is good!  Tonight, repeat! 

I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth."

                        Psalm 34:1

Friday, April 16, 2010

Traveling Companions

      I have a very special set of traveling companions.  They go everywhere I go.  Now before you envision a little old lady muttering to self pushing a shopping cart, let me venture to explain!

             The Angel Bear was given to me by my friend Diane when I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2001.  I took her with me to all of my treatments. She was a simple but special reminder that I had a host of dear friends and family praying, loving and supporting me. A few weeks later Diane was also diagnosed with breast cancer; giving the little Angel Bear even more meaning.  Angels were also now encamped around Diane and her family.

              Two of the grandchildren were especially captivated by my Angel Bear.  I explained to them why she meant so much to me. Not to be left out, they each gave me one of their favorites.  Megan selected her yellow Care Bear and Connor his Froggy.   Last week I realized Froggy was not in his usual spot.  I was in near panic mode by the time I finally located and returned him to his secured spot.

              The pink lamb is my newest friend.  She was a gift from my sister Rema in honor of a "Cancerversary".  She arrived in my life just in time. When I went through a re-occurrence scare; soft and huggable my little lamb comforted me.

               When the grandchildren are in "Nana's Bus", they gingerly buckle a friend in with them; those special friends who have become such an important part of our family.

               The seemingly smallest gesture can immeasurably touch a person's heart!  Lord, remind me to always to be mindful of others. As for the moment, I must take leave to check on the shopping cart!

 Forget not to show love unto strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. Hebrews 13:2
American Standard Version


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Microwaved Sentiment

         Nephew Andy initiated a Facebook conversation about the demise of his microwave.  Ours bit the dust this week as well.  The discussion ranged from parents' old microwaves to, "they don't make them like they use to."

        "Goodbye sweet microwave. We've had many good years together, rest in peace. Seriously, how many people have ever had to replace a microwave because it died? I thought they were the only thing that lasted longer than luggage. Lori sold our old one last year. By old one I mean the 1st Micro mama and daddy ever owned; from like 1982! And it still worked! It was larger than a double wide but still!" .....Andy W.  (Pictured with wife Lori and son Logan)
         I made my first microwave purchase when the kids were small.  As it was quite expensive, $500.00 in the 80's, it was a definite luxury. My rational was it would be a great help in our crazy hectic life. That was back in the day with much talk of quality time.  As it turns out, it was more entertainment for the kids rather than providing faster healthier meals.  They invented a game, "Let's see which food can cause the greatest explosion."  If memory serves me correctly, one of their favorites was the egg.  I reminded them you must prick solid food before heating.  They didn't even bother to plead ignorance.  "But they won't 'splode'!"  Being forced to eat their shrapnel, seemed to curtail the game--somewhat.  At least I found less evidence of it anyway. They did have several "accidents."

       Getting over twenty plus years of service from that first top of the line Tappan microwave, I think I got my money's worth.  We purchased her second replacement this week. The first didn't last anywhere near as long as she and cost only a fraction of hers. She served us well the old Tappan.  So much so that the microwave in our household has become a necessity.  Second only to the coffee maker, if they fail, it is an emergency situation.

       I would agree. No. Whether it is good, bad or indifferent, they do not make things the way they use to!  Dare I say of the old Tappan; "She Was One Good Egg"?

Isaiah 43:18 Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

"X" Marks the Spot

           Driving home recently, I was having yet another conversation with God on the same subject. We have been praying and seeking His direction.  "Lord, can you just spell it out for us? Give us a sign that we are making the right choices.  We so need your assurance we are on the right path."  Then just as on cue, ahead appeared a cloud formation shaped like an "X". 

        Thankfully, my husband and I are generally a good balance. I tend to be hastier with decisions. He takes time to think and pray: sometimes days, sometimes months.  I have learned to invoke what I call the anti-nag rule.  After asking twice, leave it alone!  Each time I venture past that or push; I have discovered the thinking clock starts all over.  In the meanwhile, God gives me these little signs of encouragement along the way.

       Effecting this particular decision was the expected change in Dan's employment.   There was a possibility of our relocating out of state should his present company purchase another.  Of course, God worked it out in better ways than we could have imagined.  His company was bought.  We received a welcoming letter from the new owners. With great excitement, Dan pointed to the bottom of the company stationery. Below the signature of the new CEO, was a scripture from the book of Isaiah.  Dan was confident in his decision.

        As with the Israelites in the wilderness; a cloud by day and fire by night, He still leads us.  He speaks to us as uniquely as He created us.  Even when we feel lost, He knows exactly where we are and where we are going. We are never off of His radar. His mark is always on us! Better yet, no anti-nag rules needed!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Special Easter Celebration

      Easter has always been my favorite holiday and spring time my favored season of the year. As the earth is recuperating from the winter and budding signs of spring rejuvenates our minds, Easter rejuvenates our souls.  We are reminded of the hope we have of new beginnings and the promise of an eternal future.

      Not so surprising when I was diagnosed with cancer the eve of the Easter season nine years ago, I chose to put off treatment in order to celebrate with my family.  Typically we do not include the "Easter Bunny" in our Easter celebration.  It is a particularly special season of honor and reverence to our Savior..

      Son Michael flew in from Dallas with his oldest child, Haley.  Our daughter in law Becky had just given birth to their second child Megan but typically generous, encouraged them to come. Daughter Misty and the rest of the family clan joined us.  In spite of the cloud of an uncertain future looming overhead, we had a wonderful weekend.

     Since this was such a special Easter, we decided to play the role of "Easter Bunny" just this one time.  Dan sneaked an overly stocked basket onto the front porch, rang the door bell and raced around through the back of the house. We asked Haley to answer the bell for us raising her immediate suspicion.  She stood; puzzled no one was at the door. Finally, she cautiously picked up the basket. When asked who had been at the door, she thought a minute and as a big smile crossed her face with the wisdom of a three year old exclaimed, "SANTA CLAUS!"   So much for the bunny!


They will spring up like grass in a meadow, like poplar trees by flowing streams. Isaiah 44:4