And God Said, “Write This!”

God planted a seed in my heart to write when he formed me in my mother’s womb. That seed was watered and began to bloom when I was still in grade school.

Summers with my grandparents became a time to write and direct backyard shows for which we charged a nickel. That fee bought a bowl of popcorn, a glass of Koolaid, and a half hour of the children on the block singing songs learned in Sunday School, and short, usually amusing, plays.

 

 

As the years passed, my love for writing only increased. Always shy and wanting to be out of the spotlight, I found escape in the written word. As a teen those words formed poetry.

Later, life interrupted with marriage and awesome children. My job became doing the best I could for my family. Little ones are given to us “for a time,” but ultimately they belong to Him. The desire to write simmered softly in the back of my heart…because a God given gift doesn’t dissipate.

After the children were grown and married, and a job loss left me unexpectedly with time on my hands, the desire to write exploded. The next seven years, the path opened before me and my long ago dreams evolved into published books. Books the reviewers liked!

Then Jesus called my husband of 33 years home. This left a hole in my heart and in my life. One year later, I lost my son to an act of suicide, which I could not understand. Saying goodbye when there is no closure keeps the pain alive. I struggled and could not write inspirational fictional books. Books with a happily ever after.

Instead I began to write a morning post of hope on Facebook and turned my blogging to pouring out my pain in hopes of showing others that no matter our circumstances, Jesus is always with us. The months and years passed and God began to give me a word to share with others in my FB posts. I would put my hand on the keyboard and the words would flow. God told me someone needed to hear that message. I trusted Him.

I tried to write, but each book fell apart before taking shape. The passion to write fiction had left.

God led me to other jobs, opened other doors. He places us where we learn, where we struggle, and where we grow. He is always preparing us for our eternal home.

During the last months of 2017, God began to speak to me. He said, “Write this.” He revealed an audience needing to read stories of how He works in the everyday lives of ordinary people. How He can turn bad into good. How He can turn the darkness to light. How letting go and letting God allows Him to share His grace and mercy.

As this first week of January 2018 draws to a close, He has called me to write inspirational fiction books again. So, I give Him my best yes, and thank Him for the opportunity to write for Him.

There is beauty in being over 70. More time to spend with God. More time to seek wisdom in the Word. And more moments to listen and answer His call.

Another Masterpiece from God…Snow!!!

I woke this morning to find a beautiful layer of snow on the ground. Since then I’ve been watching the snowflakes come down through the windows of my condo. I love the pristine whiteness, the glimmer of light on the diamond-like snowflakes, and the overwhelming sense of God’s power and love. I love snow.

My office window view

The branches on the little pine trees are snow covered. Only God can create such a gorgeous masterpiece. I tried unsuccessfully to capture what I see in pictures.

 

Living room window

I remember winters past, when I was about twelve. My best friend had received one of those large round metal signs (advertising Coca Cola) from her grandfather. We bundled up and pulled that big round sign up the hill in the school yard where we both climbed in and raced lickety-split down, down, down. We laughed so hard and had such fun, we never felt the cold. Over and over again, we’d repeat the climb, belly-laughing all the way to the bottom.

As I sit here this morning, with the memory in mind, I’m shedding a few tears because my friend was called home many years ago, way too early. I remember the last time I visited her, when she was no longer aware of who I was. I miss her, but I keep her alive in my memories.

Memories of going to school dances and jitter bugging together…because that’s what the girls did back then. The guys watched from the sidelines, only to stumble onto the dance floor when a slow song played. I remember our long walks back in “Dutch Hollow” where we grew up. Way out in the sticks. No buses, no cabs, no real cares. Riding bikes, reading books inside homemade tents, playing ball, telling jokes, shopping at Grant’s and getting frozen candy bars for the walk home.

As life moves on, I look back on the many people who wove in and out of the tapestry of my life, each unique, like each snowflake that is falling today. There are memories in the snow.

So I sip my cup of tea and smile, thanking God for snow and memories…and love.

And Then I Danced

My husband and I loved to dance. We were dance instructors for quite a few years. Music speaks to my soul…and it did to his as well.

After he went to Heaven, I never danced again, except when I would get swept up in the music on the radio and just have to move my body…but a solo dance just isn’t the same.

Life after 70 is a change from our younger years. Now I sit back and close my eyes and replay all the wonderful moments experienced in those earlier times. I hear the music and I dance in my memories.

In November, my granddaughter married her soulmate. Excitement filled my soul as the church came into sight and I knew soon I would see her walk down the aisle. The experience was everything I expected and more. Such joy filled my heart as they spoke their vows…a beautiful couple just beginning their journey with the making of this forever memory to cherish. She was a flowing image in white, contrasting with her dark hair. A breathtaking bride with a handsome groom.

They are perfect for each other. I love their sense of fun and humor, their love of animals, and most of all how they love each other. And how they are kind and compassionate to an over 70’s grandma.

You know what happens after the wedding, right? The reception!! Woo hoo! Party time. Music, so much music, so many people dancing! Everyone was so happy and pictures were snapping, laughter, food, and a lot of noise…and music, music, music.

At one point in the evening, my new grandson began “twerking” me! So what does an old lady do? Why, I twerked as best I could! My granddaughter joined in and everyone was laughing. It was great fun. I only wish my body could have twerked the way theirs could.

One might say I had danced at that point. But the best was yet to come. The night was nearly at an end when the D.J. played a slow song and the dance floor filled with couples. I sat with a smile on my face and watched the younger, and some older, people do what my husband and I once did.

Then, my new grandson appeared and held out his hand and asked me to dance!

And then I danced!

We moved across the floor with all the other couples, and my heart was overflowing with love. This new member of my family gave me the best gift I could have ever received.

I might never dance again, but I will always cherish this memory. I know my husband must have been smiling down on us.

I will always cherish…the dance.

 

Humbled in the Face of Affliction

You are never too old to be humbled.

Isaiah 48:10 “See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.”

Many of you might already know of my daughter’s upcoming open heart surgery on Thursday, December 14, 2017. As a child of the King, I know this is in His hands. I trust Him. But…as a mother, I must admit I hold some fear. Mother’s are supposed to take care of their children. That’s how God made us! Yet, even as my cherished child is facing this affliction, she has been praying for me! I am humbled.

She, too, is a mother, so she understands how a mother’s heart works. And she prays for me. And I am humbled. I am the mother. Praying is what I do. I pray for her, for her health, and for every aspect of her life. I have done this since I first knew of her existence, knit in my womb, placed into my care by God.

That’s what mothers do.

I cry when I realize I am the recipient of her prayers as she faces this operation which will save her life.

I’m puzzled when the doctors ask me if she ever had Rheumatic Fever. Never did any of her doctors diagnose her with this childhood disease. She was always struggling with health issues, troubled by multiple bouts of bronchitis, strep throat, and pneumonia, but never did I hear the words rheumatic fever. But rheumatic fever is what causes mitral valve stenosis.

I question how this happened. Did I miss something along the way? Ah, but this is Satan whispering in my ear. And I must not listen. Whatever happened, happened. And now she is now going through a fire.

God promises that even though He allows us to go into the fire, He will never leave our side. He will walk through it with us. If He brings us to it, He will bring us through it. And that is where my trust is tonight.

My daughter is being refined. She is being transformed. She is one of God’s miracles and He is going to do another miracle with her. When she comes out on the other side, it will be to His glory! She is a living testimony of how God prepares us to bring honor to Him.

Right now God is holding me up. I feel as if I’m riding on His wings, flying as the eagle flies through a storm. This, I believe, is not only about my faith, but about my daughter’s faith and her prayers for me.

I kneel in His presence…human, hopeful and humbled.

An Open Slate Lazy Kind of Saturday

I love a Saturday where I don’t have any outstanding obligations. There are so many things I need to get done on Friday and Saturday, I rarely have a day like today!

It doesn’t matter that it’s my day to sleep in, the cats know when they expect to be fed and refuse to acknowledge that Saturday is a day Mom can stay in bed a little later than usual. So at 6:30 this morning, I’m feeding three hungry cats. Once I’m out of bed, my eyes and body are wide awake, so going back to those warm covers is not an option.

Once the cats are fed they have no issues with taking a long nap! They each have found their preferred spot for the day.

Do you realize how difficult it is to scoot an office chair when you have a cat balanced on the back of it? It is definitely a challenge!

Wilbur prefers to sleep on the back of my office chair so he doesn’t miss anything I’m doing!

I really don’t mind the cats sleeping on my bed, but I do put a protective cover over the comforter. It’s especially nice when one does this just before I go to bed because they warm it up nicely!

Charlotte prefers my bed

Three beds…three cats…only one chooses to use this today. Bless his heart, Templeton is almost too big to fit!

Templeton likes his bed

With all of them snoozing, I can now plan my Saturday. First on the agenda was cleaning out two drawers of my desk. Check that off my list!

When I’m finished with my writing time, I want to do some coloring. I have some pages to finish shading and a new one to finish coloring. It’s very relaxing, especially if you listen to Christmas music!

The book I’m currently coloring

Picture to finish shading

new pic I’m working on

I will find time to squeeze in walking on the treadmill and listening to an audio book. This is my favorite way to exercise. Then I will find time on this Saturday to watch Hallmark channel.

Right now, I’m headed to the kitchen for another cup of tea! Hope your Saturday is filled with all things you “want” to do.

Wishing you a blessed day!