Saturday, October 30, 2010


The last few weeks have been extremely busy for our family.  We have been preparing for an estate sale of the contents of my husband's mother's home.  "Mamaw" was 95 when she went to be with the Lord last December and her house was FULL of 95 years worth of accumulated "treasures".

Mamaw was a keeper, in more ways than one.  She found it very difficult to part with things.  Having grown up during the Depression era, she knew the value of finding uses for everything, even if it appeared old and worn, you might could use it for SOMETHING later on ( a trait her son - my husband - inherited from her).  She also was very sentimental...a trait that I totally relate to...which meant she found it hard to let go of anything given to her by a child, grandchild, friend or acquaintance. 

So for days we have priced her "treasures"....ceramic angels of every shape and size; boxes of sewing patterns and fabric and notions; boxes of craft supplies from plastic apples to pipe cleaners to doll parts; lots and lots of clothes; tablecloths, brand new kitchen towels, and tons of Christmas decorations, cookware, pots and pans....just to name a few. 

We would be going along fine then suddenly we would run across some little object that would evoke a memory of the woman we loved so much.  Her dented aluminum funnel that she used canning literally hundreds of jars of her delicious pickles, preserves and chili sauce brought tears to our eyes, the pain of our loss still fresh after almost a year.  You could not look at that funnel without seeing Mamaw standing there in her worn apron stirring a pot on the stove.  That was her favorite place in the world. 

Going through her cabinets we found some serving pieces that she had made herself during her pottery phase back in the late 70's....complete with the orange and yellow mushrooms that were so popular back then.  Beautifully crafted and glazed, you would not have known it was handmade had you not seen her initials on the bottom of the dish and the date.  What a treasure for us to have.  We also have the ceramic CHRISTmas tree that she made us during that same phase.... a gift I have treasured so much through the years and even more so, now that she is gone.  I will never display it without thinking of her and how much she meant to our family.  That tree is family heirloom and is priceless to me.

Yes, her house was full of lots of things and as the customers filed through her house yesterday, filling their bags with her worldly goods, I could not help but think to myself  "You are buying all of her worldly goods, none of which was that valuable in monetary terms, but we, her family, got the best part of all.  We got her for 95 years and her influence and love and gentleness cannot be bought or sold.  When the house is empty of all her worldly possessions, and the house is finally sold, we will each have a few of her earthly treasures to keep and cherish, but she will always be a part of us and THAT is the greatest treasure of all!!"

Sunday, October 17, 2010


I have a Bible Stories for Children cd that I usually play in the car whenever my granddaughters are with me.  My oldest, who is 4, is old enough to really pay attention.  She also is familiar with many of the stories from Sunday School and from some Bible story videos she has at home.  There are certain ones that are her favorites, like Jesus calling the little children to Him.  She always asks for that one no matter where the cd begins.  Makes me wonder if she identifies with the children and that she loves the idea of Jesus wanting the children around Him.  I pray it gives her the sense of His overwhelming love for her.

Another favorite of hers is the story of Esther.  She has the movie of this so she is familiar with the story.  I think that is great and I thank God for all that her parents are doing to point her to Jesus and to His Word.  I was grown before I ever heard the story of Esther.

Yesterday we were riding in the car and she was listening to that story.  She began asking questions about the story and one of her questions was "Why did Haman want to kill all the Jews?"  I told her because he hated them.  Then she asked "What is hate?"

That question pierced my heart because it made me realize how innocent she is and how (thankfully) protected she is.  She has a wonderful Mom and Dad and extended family who love her and cherish her.  She lives in a safe neighborhood.  And, praise God, at the age of 4 she still does not know what HATE is!!  Oh that it could always be that way!!! 

The more I thought about that, the more I thought I WISH I COULD BE 4 AGAIN!!
Wouldn't it be great not to know anything about :















Yet even as I write this, I realize that there are many 4-year olds who HAVE experienced many of those things.  How heartbreaking! 

The good news is that just as my granddaughter's favorite story of the little children Jesus called to himself, He calls us to Himself, inviting us to bring all of those hurts, worries, and concerns to Him so that He can wrap His arms around us and show us how much He values us and how much He loves us.  We can come to Him just as those little children in the Bible story did.  His arms are open wide and He says "Come!  Anyone who hears should say 'Come!'; and the one who is thirsty should come.  Whosoever desires should take the living water as a gift".  Rev. 21: 17 and He also says "Come to me all ye that are heavy laden and I will give you rest." Matt. 11: 28

Are you weak and heavy laden
Cumbered with a load of care
In His arms He'll take and shield thee
Thou wilt find a solace there....

--"What a Friend We Have in Jesus"

Saturday, October 2, 2010


Several years ago I attended a writer's conference in Little Rock, Arkansas.  There I had the privilege of meeting a beautiful young wife and mother, Kim Dillard.  Kim's story captivated me.

Her husband, Steve, had been diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor and basically was given a "death sentence".  However, God had other plans.  By His amazing grace and mercy, He directed them to one of the top 3 brain surgeons in the world who practiced....where else but Little Rock, Arkansas.  Dr. Yasargil performed the delicate surgery and Steve made a remarkable recovery.

I "friended" Kim on Facebook some time ago and today I saw a post from her that indicated that Steve was once again undergoing chemotherapy.  I went to his Caring Bridge website and began to read of his latest journey which began in April of 2010.
Steve has once again had a brain tumor to develop in the exact spot of the previous one.  Surgery and treatment have followed.

When I first met Kim she was beginning a ministry of encouragement and her theme was HOPE.  We lost touch after a while and only re-connected through Facebook.  As I ran across her post today and went to the CB site, I began to read her posts from the time of Steve's diagnosis in April.  I am only into May so far, but I have been SO blessed by what I've read that I just HAD to post it and share it with you today. 

I know SO many who are hurting, struggling and wondering what in the world God is up to in their lives.  Maybe you are one of them.  If not, you probably know someone who is and, if so, I pray that you will share this with them.  I pray that Kim's words will be an encouragement to you.  And Kim...if you read this...I thank you for allowing God to speak through your pain.  God bless you!

"[God] gives good gifts and perfect gifts. Can we accept the blessings that come from God and refuse to embrace the times of pain and suffering that teach us lessons about His character and ours?

Psalms 16:5 says, "Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup. You have made my lot, secure."

I have meditated on that verse a lot this week. Our cup and our portion is our life, our circumstances, our relationships, our dreams, it is all that is going on in our lives right now. The verse says that it was assigned by the Lord. Personally chosen. Hand picked. Divinely assigned! That means that whatever I am going through has come straight from God's heart to mine. He has chosen what is in my cup based on what is best for me. I have 2 choices. I can fling the cup to the ground and reject the path God has allowed or I can offer the cup to Him, trusting He knows what is best. When Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane, 3 times, he begged and he pleaded for the Father to "let this cup, pass from me." Then in complete surrender of His own plans and agenda, he cried, "not my will, but yours be done." God did not remove the cup of Christ's suffering. God knew the ultimate goal and plan. It was the only way of purchasing redemption for mankind. Heart wrenching? YES! Painful? Extremely! Worth it? Absolutely!

The end of the verse says, "you (God) have made my lot, secure."

"lot" as defined by Webster is: over all circumstances and conditions in life, including every thing that happens to you.

WOW! That is my "lot" and that is what Christ has made secure.

So let's think of this verse in light of these definitions.

Lord, you have carefully picked and chosen for me,(my cup and my portion) my life, my circumstances, my relationships, and my dreams and all the events taking place in my life, right now. You have made my (lot) circumstances and conditions in life, including every thing that happens to me to be secure.

One more thought--  God did not take away Christ's suffering even though, He asked.  But....God did send angels to minister to Him during his darkest and most difficult hours."