Friday, January 28, 2011

Ponderings of My Heart

Today is my oldest son’s 31st birthday.
Thirty-one.  Wow. That’s a lot.
Every year as each of my son’s birthdays draw near
I find myself looking back with fond remembrances.
I’m certain this is a common practice among mothers every where
Although it’s not something we always voice.
Whether you’re a mom to 1 or (what is it now?) 19
Each pregnancy, labor and delivery is as unique as each child.
We keep those quiet thoughts close inside our hearts
And they, like our children, are treasures.
I love this scripture.
I think it’s beautiful …

But Mary kept all these things & pondered them in her heart.
Luke 2:19

This is never more true than with your firstborn,
For it’s your firstborn who made you “Mom”.
Their new beginning is your new beginning.
Until this moment, you never really knew
How much you could love. You are both rookies in a sense.
They’ve never had a Mom and you’ve never been one.
And while the same is true for subsequent children
It’s no longer true for you. You are no longer a rookie.
You are now armed with a wealth of knowledge,
A seasoned veteran. Lessons learned, born of love.
Each new addition will, no doubt, benefit from your experience.
No practice needed. “I’ve got this”…
I’ve lovingly referred to Joshua as my ‘practice child’
And with that, let me say this …
“Practice makes perfect”.

Happy birthday Joshua!
Your momma loves you



Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Can I Have Some Order Please!

“Winter storm warning, 3-6 inches of snow … Thursday evening through Friday morning” says the forecaster … Ugh … not again.  But it’s January and snow is in order … Order …
I’m actually a fan of order. I’m unable to function without it. Nothing can make me turn into a blubbering idiot quite like the absence of order. I even enjoy the definition of the word:
1. a condition of methodical or prescribed arrangement among component parts such that proper functioning or appearance is achieved; 2. a condition in which freedom from disorder or disruption is maintained through respect for established authority.  
What’s not to love about that? It comforts me. God is into order as well.  Ecclesiastes Chapter 3:1-2 says:
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted …

I’ll not include the whole passage (v 1-8) but I encourage you to read it for yourself. Sounds like order to me though. How about you? Yep.

This winter has been a season of learning for me.  You know the children’s song so many of us learned in Sunday School …

“He’s still working on me. To make me into what I ought to be.
 It took Him just a week to make the moon and the stars,
the sun and the Earth and Jupiter and Mars.
 How loving and patient He must be.
He’s still working on me”.

Yeah, that would be me. A work in progress. I’m learning to enjoy a few things about winter. Surprised? Me too.  One of the things I’ve learned is that it brings some people such joy.  Yes, there are those who truly enjoy the snow (you know who you are ;). This realization has caused me to take a good long look (no really, I’ve stared at the stuff!) and while its coldness is not something I enjoy personally, I can appreciate its beauty (from the confines of my warm home) … its crispness … its ability to cover up the ugliness the besets the grey hills once Autumn has bid us farewell … the quiet it almost seems to command as it falls … (perhaps it really is ‘angel dandruff’ ;) … and I’ve learned to appreciate the time we’re allotted when we are forced to slow down. Stay in. Rest.  

 So I’ll endure … “But he (or she ;) that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved” ~~ Jesus (Matthew 24:13) … yes, I know the Lord was talking about the end of time but really, I have had moments when the grayness of the winter sky makes me feel as though the end is near (I’ll wrap this up before I get too dramatic! ;)

So in this season, the snow is in order and I’m (learning to be) okay with that. But I’m thrilled to know that the peeping frogs, chirping birds, daffodils and tulips of Spring, in their assigned season, are also part of His order (and something to dream about & look forward to ;).  “The steps of a good man (or woman) are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his ways” ~~ The Psalmist David (Psalms 23:7) … Awww, order, I love it!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

January morning glory ...

"Morning glory is the best name,
it always refreshes me to see it"

~~ Henry David Thoreau ~~

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Winter lies too long ...

"Winter lies too long in country towns;
hangs on until it is stale and shabby,
old and sullen"

~Willa Cather~

Monday, January 10, 2011

January ... Oh January ...

January … BBBRRRRRR … 31 days of blue cold weather. It was 7ยบ outside this morning.  Not only am I not a fan of snow but I detest the cold in general.  Once my bones are chilled, I never feel warm again (not even under flannel sheets, three quilts & a comforter) … well, at least not until the Spring thaw.  Let me just say, that kind of cold can make a girl feel blue (& a bit cranky!).  Never am I more in touch with my Southern California raising then when winter arrives. It’s then that I feel a bit like a stranger in a foreign land (ok, I’ve exaggerated here a bit for effect but you get my point, right?;) With that said, I have never made such an attempt to avoid the wintertime blues as I have this year. I’m really quite pleased with myself and have decided the effort I’ve made reflects character growth.  (Please no comments on what a character I am. I’m trying to be a grown up here).
In the past, I’ve always thought that if I can just get through January, I'd be alright. February, with its 28 days, has a lot to offer. In addition to its brevity, it brings a cute distraction in the form of ‘Groundhog Day’. Each year I anxiously await “Punxsutawney Phil” and his prediction as to whether or not we will have to endure six more weeks of winter.  There have been many years, given the opportunity, I would’ve choked that stupid groundhog as he always seems to see his shadow.  So it’s likely I can be heard on February 2nd voicing my displeasure because of that dumb rodent and his prediction. As if his being frightened by his shadow actually meant the continuation of winter weather was somehow written in stone.  Ridiculous you say?  I know. Maybe this year, I’ll skip that portion of the winter program. Why give a groundhog that much power? 
Valentine’s Day is really February’s claim to fame, don’t you think? Hopeless romantic that I am, I can really get behind a month that has a day set aside for the celebration of all things LOVE!  What’s not to love about a day where you are actually expected to indulge in the eating of chocolate? I knew you’d agree! Well, wait a minute, I know what you’re thinking. Sometimes February has 29 days. Well, that happens once every four years.  Really, what kind of a whiner do you think I am?  I can handle it (and I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it ;)
Then there’s March, and while it’s true that, like January, it has 31 days, it’s also the month that boasts the end of winter and ushers in Spring! I have always held fast to the motto “I can do anything for a little while” thus the reason March has never posed much of a challenge for me and my psyche.  In the 32 winters I’ve spent in Appalachia, we’ve had several HUGE snows in the month of March but that’s okay.  It’s March … really, even if it does snow “hub deep to a ferris wheel” (and it has) how long can it last? Not long, right? Exactly. So have at it Ol' Man Winter … “I don’t dread you none” (my husband used to say that when he was younger –in reference to what I don’t remember- but it amused me terribly).  March is also home to the beginning of Daylight Savings , St. Patrick’s Day, and, on occasion,  Easter!  What a great month, huh?  Agreed!
Oh, how I long for Spring, but alas, for now, it’s still January.  But wait, upon reflection, there have indeed been moments in my life where this long cold month has redeemed itself.   After all, it was a on cold January day in 1979 that I married my high-school sweetheart.  Thirty-two years later, that sweet boy who stole my heart still has it.  It was early on a January morn in 1980 when I became a momma for the first time.  I will never forget my first moments with that precious babe, who stopped his crying as soon as he heard my voice.  That moment, would be the first of many joys he and his brother would bring me in the most fulfilling role of my life.  Just the thought of it warms my heart and soul … January, oh January, I may owe you an apology.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Monday 2011 ...

It’s the first Monday of 2011 and I got up bright & early (but only because the phone rang), I’ve snuggled with my Boochie-girl (who was also woke up early by the phone), made her breakfast, read my Bible, had my devotions & prayed.  Hmmmm, this Monday, this NEW Monday, is not too dissimilar from my Mondays of yesteryear (aka 2010 ;) …. What’s up with that?
Shouldn’t I be working on menu plans, a new budget (so awesome it will free the Dial Home from debt in 2011;), clipping coupons,  mopping  floors, vacuuming, dusting, stripping beds … shouldn’t I?  Uh, the answer to that question is “yes”…. and I will …
I spent the last evening of 2010 just as I did last New Year’s Eve, with a group of ladies from my church … laughing, bonding (which always includes eating in the Church of God:), learning, teaching, praising and praying our way into the new year and I’m so glad I did. Yes, there was effort made to get there and I’m glad I made the effort but more importantly, I’m glad I was given the opportunity to do so.  This was the second year the ladies of our church met on New Year’s Eve and I hope it becomes an annual event.  It’s powerful … encouraging … necessary.   
I’m looking forward to what 2011 holds, although I’m aware of a few challenges it promises to bring, but that’s okay, ‘cause I also know that the Lord is in control and I absolutely trust and know that He’s a Father with my best interest in mind. No worries there :)
Here are a few pictures of our meeting on New Year's Eve ...
 We had a small group but The Word says "where two or three are gathered ...."

 "Sis. Pastor" ... Dreama Wilson

 DJ (who turned from the camera!), my mom, Sis. Darlene & Sis. Sheila (on the front row)

 Natalie blessed us with a song & did a fantastic job!

Sis. Coreen, Sis. Janice, Sis. Marcella & Sis. Lee

 DJ turned away again!

Little Miss Lexi sang for us too! 
So, I’ll get to "all things Monday" in a little while.  I’ve learned in my nearly 32 years of homemaking it’ll be there … no one is going to jump in and do it for me (unfortunately!;)  but first, I want to encourage any and all who read this to schedule time in your life for God.  It’s the Word that was given for our church, which means it’s for all of us. Make time for Him …. develop your relationship with Him & nurture it throughout 2011, one on one. You’ll be glad you did!
Ok, now onto my day …. God bless!