Select Page

A time for Thanksgiving and reflection

A time for Thanksgiving and reflection is here.
There is so much going on with many people on a personal level and on a statewide level.
Tragedy is the word of the week.
A family in our church lost their oldest son in a car accident.
What a terrible loss and shock.
Then a car smashed into a group of parade band players wrecking so many lives in the middle of carnage.
SO unnecessary, so horrible.
I have few words to share about any of this; it is just too difficult to wrap my mind around the why.
Last night I was getting ready for bed as I was thinking of Thanksgiving and the dinner to come.
Families will have one table setting missing. One chair empty. A chair EMPTY.
What do you do?
The parade could have had multiple kids in a family.
I am not aware of the names or the damage I just know it was horrible.
Thanksgiving, A time for giving thanks.
Can we really do that in the middle of crisis times>
Grief follows those around whose hearts are broken and weary.
No one can prepare you for the loss of a loved one.
It is not in a book that one can read, it is not a class for preparation.
It is in the shock of hearing and receiving the news.
YOUR loved one is gone. Injured. Wounded somewhere in a hospital bed.
Someone who did not know you or them or anyone else, just kept driving.
Someone caused the intensity and the life altering moments forever.
At a time of Thanks giving we are a bit confused how we can do it.
Give thanks with a grateful heart.
But how if your loved one is gone or seriously injured?
Our Pastor spoke on Sunday, how you just have to keep pressing forward.
He is very sad, having lost a lot of those who meant the most to him this year.
It is not an easy job and sometimes your own emotions cannot be pushed down anymore.
A time for Thanksgiving and reflection is here.
Let us take some time for some quiet.

Learn the unforced rhythms

Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.
I won’t lay anything heavy or ill fitting on you.
Keep company with me and you will learn to live freely and lightly. Matthew 11:28-29-30

I love this verse.
First of all it sets the stage for us to listen. “Learn” and trust.
Then HE promises us nothing will come at us that is not within our ability to over come, so long as we keep HIS company.
When we have friends we want to spend time with them.
When we know and love the Lord, we want to spend time with him too.
Within this verse.
He is setting the stage for us to ‘keep company’ with him, walk with Him and learn from Him.
He being the Lord Jesus.
He promises we will learn that doesn’t mean, maybe, but we WILL learn so long as we have to keep an open mindset.
The unforced rhythms of Grace.
What does that mean?
I think it is a slow progression.
Rhythms are repetitive, like in music, over and over or like the waves of the sea.
A slow learning, a deep quiet of intentional listening.
A trust that nothing will be so difficult that we cannot make it through without HIS help.
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer, I trusted in the process before me.
It was important for me to center in and not allow fear to over power me.
As we get closer to Thanksgiving and the holidays, I pray we learn a quiet peaceful place.
Deep within our hearts.It allows a slow ministering kind of healing.
The grace is given not because we deserve it or have done anything to have it given to us.
HE gives us grace because that is the KIND of loving Father He is to us. It is a gift.
Learn, means to be open, and be ready to receive, may we grow strong in this process as we learn the unforced rhythms of grace.

It was November 3rd 1973

It was November 3rd 1973.
We were young. We had no idea what we were doing, I was 18 and he was 19.
I could cook Kraft macaroni and cheese and top ramen noodles, oh and hamburger helper too.
We chose a autumn theme with colors of gold, yellow, green, brown and white.
I paid for the wedding. His mom made the wedding cake and my grandma made my dress.
The wedding was simple. The church was pretty.
(probably the last time I will get him to wear a yellow tuxedo)

Our youth Pastor did our ceremony and many years later, we were able to meet him again and give him a huge hug.It wasn’t too long till we had a son who now has three boys and a daughter who has three girls.
Grand children are the best.
We adore each of them and pray constantly for their health and happiness and that they will walk and know the Lord at some point in their lives.
It has been 48 years. Many changes, much growth, many pages turned in a book of life together.
We have lost parents and siblings, and good friends too.
Life is always a series of changes and growth.
Now we enter into retirement and growing old through good and bad.
As the ceremony said, in sickness and in health, richer or poorer till we part from each other.
For now we journey along and thank God for every year we spend making memories. Happy Anniversary to us!
It was November 3rd, 1973.

The last day of October will be here

The last day of October will be here very soon.
About this time I switch my thoughts to the holidays, Thanksgiving and the menu to follow.
We already ordered our turkey from a natural ‘health’ grocery store.
Not really sure who will join us. but I am always up for a good turkey dinner with all the leftovers.
I found a friends recipe for whole cranberries which is very good.
We just have to find our ‘items’ for the dish.
Soon we also will have our anniversary too.
Yes we got married in November using fall colors and fall themes.
I love the autumn colors, so the choice was ok and really it was a pretty picture for the album.
We are planning a little get away in our trailer, the last one of the year.
It should be fairly nice weather and a good time to just ‘relax’.
Although these days of retirement I purposely relax on a regular basis.
I do not like to be stressed or rushed or feeling like I have to do something right now.
Retirement has been a good season and it has given me time to heal from my cancer recovery.
I have actually retired years ago.
My husband retired about five years ago and he really keeps busy doing what he wants now.
We are in a good place in our lives and our hearts are full with ‘feelings of thanksgiving’.
All is well with our grown up kids and their families and our extended family is good too.
So much to be thankful for.
There was a song that became one of my all time favorites, it says, “give thanks with a grateful heart.”
Yes we are grateful. We are blessed. We have nothing to complain about.
The last day of October will be here soon and we can one more time, finish the year strong and healthy.
That is our hope.

A sweet friendship refreshes the soul

A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.
I have this saying hanging up on a beautiful plaque hanging on a cork board behind my computer.
I actually purchased it from a very special friend, the sentiment was so good.
It has roses and birds on it and it is exactly my ‘favorite’ kind of treasure, her friendship is too.
Also there is a page that I made years ago hanging by my computer.
When I was in therapy we spent a few sessions cutting out magazines and pasting pictures and sayings.
If you have never done it you will find it amazing how the feelings come up when searching for words.
In fact it would be a great activity to do with children who are not always able to ‘share’ what they feel.
The saying is: You can revisit an old friend and see how much it’s changed.
Our friends are with us for specific seasons of our lives.
Have you ever gone back to spend time with some one, who used to be very close to you and it felt odd and different?
It is like going back to a home that once was “your” home but now is just a box full of others belonging.
Time can create a distance and sometimes that is hard.
Another saying is,
“No matter how busy our lives, there are ways to make sure neither distance nor everyday demands, keep us from friends we don’t want to lose.”
It is so important to let others know how special they are and what they mean to us.
Friends are gifts we give ourselves and how we deal with those gifts or moments is extremely important.
Life is short and as I have aged and slowed down I have learned that time spent with someone special is priceless.
Another saying on my paper is this one: It’s friendship – would she be there if you needed her? Yes because she knows you would be there if she needed you.
I think it is such a great reminder for you and I to remember.
A sweet friendship refreshes the soul.

I can’t believe it is autumn

I can’t believe it is autumn already.
We drive down streets lined with trees all colorful in oranges and yellows.
I love this time of year.
We actually got married this season and it was a beautiful time for fall flowers.
I think the fall reminds us that it is refreshing to let go of the heat of summer.
Of course I am by nature a sweater gal and I love flannel pants and warm boots.
I am happiest when I can bundle up and walk outside in the brisk cool air.
I might need my inhaler before I start, but it is so refreshing to go out in the neighborhood.
I am going to decorate our home, I have fake pumpkins and bundles of wheat for assorted vases.
Outside the front porch changes from summer flowers to fall.
I have to put the wheat outside so my cats don’t eat them.
Most likely we will not buy a real pumpkin, that was for the kids and we don’t have any little ones.
Autumn is a time of rest where the trees produce then they lose their natural beauty.
Thanksgiving is also around the corner on the calendar.
Our traditional dinner is with both sets of our kids and their families, but the last few years it’s had to change.
We have had friends over, we have shared a meal with a neighbor, we have made it work for us.
Situations of life require us to adapt and adjust.
I love to cook a natural grown turkey with organic potatoes, with green beans and fresh cranberries.
It is one of my favorite meals and of course you have to have pumpkin pie.
One of my friends told me to try sweet potato pie, but I am not so sure that would be the same for me.
Autumn is here and it’s a time for the furnace and no longer the air conditioner.
If we had a fireplace I would definitely use it every morning.
I can’t believe it is autumn already.
Let’s make the most of these cool days ahead of us.

Are you tired? worn out?

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me.
Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest.
Walk with me and work with me — watch how I do it.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.
Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”
I love this translation of the scripture found in Matthew 11:28-30 of the new testament.
It promises hope when we feel hopeless.
It promises a solution when we are struggling.
Move away from your normal setting and breathe in the restful moments.
As I type my husband is in a pontoon boat on a lake that he loves.
Getting away and feeling the restful breeze.
Hoping to catch a few fish too but most of all just resting in the setting.
It doesn’t have to be a well planned time of getting away.
It just needs to allow more focus on resting and not doing.
Get away with me and you will recover your life.
Sometimes we need that so much.
The stress of today, of now time can be very hard to deal with.
The pandemic has caused anxiety and issues, we are not really prepared for.
Learn the unforced rhythms of grace… Nothing will be too hard I will see to it that you are ok.
Keep company with me and you will learn.
I have watched part of the movie the Chosen and it really does show the way Jesus ministered and dealt with the people.
Walk with me and work with me. Watch how I do it.
You can do the same.
He tells us these promises so we can not only move forward in hope but have a reason to rest.
I love to rest and regroup and I try to do it often.
Being retired makes it easier but it was always a part of who I am.
I cannot deal with stress that makes me irritable or grumpy.
I am glad my personality requires a time of renewing and restoring what is trying to go dim.
Are you tired and worn out? Burned out on religion?
It’s so easy to do that and feel that way.
Let’s encourage each other to focus on what is good for us.

I am remembering the horrible day

I am Remembering the horrible day of September 11, 2001.
Twenty years ago I was watching a local talk show, making breakfast for my grand daughter who was about 2.
The show was interrupted and the first plane hit, it was hard to believe at first.
It was horrific as the news unfolded the events and the second plane hit, then the pentagon was attacked.
I was in complete shock watching all that trauma.
In the old days you could hear the news but not SEE it.
The images were awful and I remember trying to turn them off, so my little grand daughter would not see them.
I am in prayer for the 20 year anniversary.
I am in prayer for our country, our unsettled safety and even our leaders are in question.
It is really a hard and difficult time.
I heard the other day a verse I was wanting to share.
“And if someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it.” 1st Peter 3:15
Because I do believe I have a deep and abiding hope, even when things look crazy and uncertain.
It is definitely uncertain these days.
Twenty years ago we were all changed.
What have they said? it was all just a few minutes long.
Then the buildings fell and the ash and debris went flying everywhere.
No one could even imagine it.
No one had a clue.
It was a horrible event that always felt similar to the pearl harbor attacks.
We were caught off guard and we were not alert.
I pray that nothing ever happens like that ever again.
Oh I pray for protection. For God’s angels to cover us with peace and comfort.
If someone asks, I will give an answer to the hope that is in me.
From my heart and from my sincere mindset.
So many lives changed forever and so much of our history went down that day.
But in saying that, it was rebuilt. We are resilient and what was horrific is now a beautiful site of memory.
I have never been there but I have heard it is a sacred place.
Today I am remembering the horrible day of September 11 and praying with intensity for calm.

Be at peace if you can when you read

Be at peace if you can, when you read the news reports, and listen to the chaos and troubles.
Remember there is peace.
On the other side of the turmoil and trauma. There will be peace.
Keep your eyes focused not on the negative or the hard reality of mask wearing and shut downs.
Keep your eyes focused on the God who is in control of all that is around us.
When we see massive hurricanes, flooding, sorrow and chaos, we can cling to the truth that we know.
God will not allow anything to happen if it is not meant to happen.
Now sometimes sin gets in the way and some make dangerous choices that test God’s patience.
Harm does come to some.
But in the big picture I think we need to continue to trust and be in peace if we can.
When I open the word, my bible, it tells me that I am loved.
It tells me that I am protected, and if His eye is on the sparrow, I know HE watches me even MORE.
I am saddened by all the chaos in the world.
I am concerned for my grand children and the world they will continue to grow up in and maybe have families.
But I also know that this world is a glorious beautiful place.
So there is balance. Sorrow and then joy. Sadness and peace at a later time.
It is hard to stay focused and not let it all wear me down.
Trust is a big word and probably the hardest at this point in our time in history.
The media will do what it can to stir the pot and make us all feel out of control.
Fear is a powerful tool and if that can penetrate the circle we live in, then it is not us that is winning.
I choose to be positive. I choose to look at the good.
Sometimes I have to look harder but it is there always.
Be at peace if you can, when you read the reports and listen to the news.
I think it’s the most important thing we can do.

My word of the year came to me

My word of the year came to me after a certain amount of waiting and praying.
I never know what might come, but it seems the ‘word’ comfort was going to be the word.
I think it is fitting especially after the chaos we have witnessed this week.
In fact I am rather ‘happy’ to stay within the comfort of my home.
God gave us this home and it has become a refuge and blessing.
I cannot read the news much or listen to it right now.
The headlines are staggering, with doom and gloom.
In fact, soon we are going to spend some time at the beach in our trailer which also gives me comfort.
There is too much chaos and too much suffering and too much fear.
We cannot sit in comfort while draped in fear.
It won’t work. Cannot work.
I realize you can’t hide from life and the issues it brings.
But when on the screen we can see evil, and heart ache and hurting.
It is more than my ‘little’ heart can take.
Suffering will always be around us.
That is part of life.
Open the word and you will find, story after story of people struggling through their circumstances.
I don’t want to pretend it doesn’t happen.
I just don’t want it to penetrate my peace.
That might sound selfish but what can I do to bring comfort to those hurting?
I can pray that the power of God fall down on them and they get rescued.
I can pray the evil people can get destroyed and get what they deserve.
I can pray for protection for those who love God and find no where to go to.
It is overwhelming and a place of difficulty to think of it all.
I have no data as to how this all will come about, or end.
Peace always comes with a cost.
My word of the year came to me after much waiting and praying.