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Hmmm…The Practice of Giving Thanks

Neglecting the practice of giving thanks has darkened their minds.
~ Sarah Young, Jesus Calling

This I know is true; focusing on the negative is blinding. Following the February death of our parents, I found myself in a blue funk, a gloomy place with little interest in what normally brought pleasure. Yet today, as soft fluffy clouds float across a baby blue sky, nearly naked trees stretch their arms heavenward, and the smell of Mom’s stuffing tickles the nose, I find myself excited with anticipation for the day’s traditions and the making of memories with family and friends.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

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Hmmm… No Night There

Keep thinking of this very old hymn and decided to share. So happy Mom and Dad no longer need to deal with tears, pain, fear and the dark of night. (Revelation 21)

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No Night There | words John R. Clements 1899; music Hart P. Danks

In the land of fadeless day
Lies the city foursquare;
It shall never pass away,
And there is no night there.

Refrain:
God shall wipe away all tears,
There’s no death, no pain, nor fears,
And they count not time by years,
For there is no night there.

All the gates of pearl are made,
In the city foursquare;
All the streets with gold are laid,
And there is no night there.

Refrain:
God shall wipe away all tears,
There’s no death, no pain, nor fears,
And they count not time by years,
For there is no night there.

All the gates shall never close
To the city foursquare;
There life’s crystal river flows,
And there is no night there.

Refrain:
God shall wipe away all tears,
There’s no death, no pain, nor fears,
And they count not time by years,
For there is no night there.

There they need no sunshine bright,
In that city foursquare;
For the Lamb is all the light,
And there is no night there.

Hmmm… Devil Dog, Lovely and Me; My Orders are Complete

Well Devil Dog and Lovely, my orders are complete as you are in heaven sitting with Jesus and those who went before. Your journey of life has only just begun. So, the tears your family and friends shed are not for you but for those who remain. Will they all see you again one day? Oh, I hope so! What a never-ending family picnic that will be! (Isaiah 25:61 Corinthians 15:1-4, John 3:16)

Hmmm… Catching Up: Red Ferns

More thoughts written February 19th as our family sat at our Mother’s side while in hospital.

These days my thoughts often gravitate to the book, Where the Red Fern Grows, written by Wilson Rawls in 1961. This coming of age story first adapted to film in 1974 follows the adventures of a young boy and his two-coonhound pups who are inseparable and learn lessons of true friendship, loyalty, heroics, and integrity. In the book, we learn of an old Cherokee legend that tells of a sacred red fern that grows between their two graves that only an angel can plant. I can’t help but compare Mom and Dad to the two pups. After 66 years together, they follow the same journey to heaven in quick succession. Dad completed his journey last week, while Mom continues with hers today. Will a red fern grow between their two graves? Not sure if I believe the legend but the symbolism it holds is very powerful. We humans need something tangible when dealing with life’s tragedies. For the young boy grieving the loss of his beloved dogs, the red fern tells him he is not alone. We too are not alone as we face losing another pillar of our family. But, are we losing them or sending them forward to help prepare a better place for the rest of us? (John 14:1-3)

Hmmm… Catching Up; A Roller Coaster Ride

My thoughts written February 8th after saying goodbye to our Dad. We know he is in heaven sitting with his Lord and family who went before. His journey of life has only just begun.

There was a point in my younger years when I loved roller coasters. Anticipation swiftly changed to exhilaration after climbing the highest peak followed by a lightening speed journey through the disorienting twists and turns, ending with a shout, let’s do that again. Yet, this roller coaster our family is riding is not so amusing but exhausting, and will not end with the same exclamation. One minute we ride the high of laughter and giddiness, the next we circle the lows of approaching uncertainty. It is during those sharp low curves our petite mother shares her wisdom with quiet grace; our job is not to understand the whys of this ride but to sit back trusting God with the controls to know what is best for us all. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Hmmm… Stuck in Traffic

Oy vey. Been stuck in traffic for an hour and ½

Said a friend’s Facebook post lamenting the joys of vacation travel.

Hmmm… Aren’t we, those who journey through the traffic jams of life with the Person of Jesus, “stuck in traffic” as we anticipate passing through the pearly gates to see His wonderful face? (Hebrews 11:8-10, Revelation 22:4)

Hmmm… A Legacy – Pass It On

On this Good Friday, well you could call it the only true Black Friday, I find myself almost jealous as I weep for a family who lost a wonderful lady I and others called Grandma. Jealous? Yes! She is spending this Easter, and those to come, at the greatest banquet table ever in heaven! And, one day I will join her and others I am missing today. (My Facebook status posted April 18, 2014)

People will forget the words you said but will remember how you made them feel.

The truth of this statement echoes in my mind as we honor a wonderful godly woman I affectionately called Grandma.

Grandma Carey had a knack for knowing what I was thinking and how I was feeling. So many memories of noticing her meaningful look followed by a sweet smile as she enveloped me in a warm hug I wished would never end. However, her words often escape me. The wishing was not for missing the embrace but wanting the warmth of love to continue, a feeling that let me know I was cherished by a lady who knew what it meant to love her Lord with a humble, compassionate heart. (Matthew 22:37)

I believe this is her legacy.

Thank you Grandma Carey for showing the meaning of a true legacy. I hope I learned well so I can pass it on. See ya later!