With the popularity of social media and the lack of teaching the social graces, sending greeting cards through the postal service may become a lost art. Do not jump to any conclusions. I appreciate greetings sent electronically just as much. However, there is a different aspect to receiving a folded sheet of card stock with a pretty graphic and printed sentiment. It is a physical expression of one’s love and care. So, today, this first birthday without a card from Mom and Dad, I will reminisce over my collection of cards received over the years and frequently read Isaiah 43:1-3; tangible reminders I am valuable and not forgotten.
Iridescent glass, sparkling china and knickknacks, a drawer full of bread ties, kerosene lanterns, stove-pipe covers on display. The soft glow of converted gas lamps, clocks with silent faces staring back at you, a welcoming field stone fireplace, the creak of a staircase where each child learned to “alleybump”. A gallery of family photos lining the walls waiting to tell the family history, the “circle” each child traveled on the first floor; all represent the unmistakable smell of stability, familiarity, and unselfish love. That is what envelopes me as I sit in the quietness of home; the house where our parents raised us and where our own children learned the essence of what it means to be family. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 1 Timothy 5:8, Proverbs 22:6)
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)
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)
Gratitude as defined by Merriam-Webster: the state of being grateful; thankfulness
- Friend is a word with a different meaning since the introduction of social media. The number of friends one has is not important but the quality of the relationship. If someone knows and tells you the truth about yourself yet remains supportive by loving you, that is a friend. Thank you my friends (you know who you are) for being truly a friend.
- I do not know how people manage in this life without the support and love of family. I cannot fathom my life without mine.
- Do we fully take advantage of one of our greatest resources, our elderly, who possess much wise advice? We can gain much knowledge from these mature sages if we take the time to ask and listen. I am thankful my parents continue to be a source I can tap into.
Do not feel guilty about taking time to be still in My Presence.
Jesus Calling, Sarah Young
But, that is exactly what I do; feel guilty when I sense the need to slow down and spend time with my Best Friend. What makes me think taking the time to meet others’ needs, desires, and timelines proves I am productively successful? Could it be the misconception I must be everyone’s Jill-of-all-trades? Maybe it is the many daily commands to go and do. Yet, in the stillness of my Best Friend’s love, encouragement, and sometimes humbling scolding, there are several invitations to wait and be still. In the lingering quiet come strength, peace and renewed energy to begin again. Where is the guilt in that? Hmmm… a good question.
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!