Sunday, August 16, 2015

One week ago

Only one week and yet it seems like a lifetime ago.

Last Sunday night at this time I was sitting in a church service when I heard the words I knew would be coming soon, yet they stung to the depths of my being.  I had just finished sharing about our amazing mission trip to China and when I sat down my dear friend looked at me with eyes that told me what I didn't want to hear and without telling me what had happened, I knew!  She said, "Right before church your sister called me." I knew what those words meant and with tears streaming down my face I walked out of church with my family close behind.  I knew it was my Nannie and had hoped I could be there for her.  I quickly found out that she had already gone to her eternal home and all I could do was be there with my family.  My heart hurt to know none of us where there when she took her last breath, yet I know that was probably how she wanted it.  As I found out more information,  I discovered that at 4:38 pm I had been at my sister's house and was looking at her clock and telling my girls we needed to hurry up and get to church.  At that exact same moment my Nannie was taking her last breath and probably saying "I need to hurry up and get to Jesus."

This past week has been difficult as we have gone through preparations and the funeral process but what a blessing to share memories and hear stories of how she touched so many lives.  Now we will all continue through the grief process and learn a new normal.  I know she would have been so proud of how beautiful she looked at her funeral, how many family and friends were there and how handsome her great grandsons were as they carried her to her final resting place on this earth.


We all knew it was time for her to go home to her Jesus, but letting go is SO HARD! I've told many people that my brain knew this was right, yet my heart was not in agreement.  Next to my mom she was THE MOST amazing, Godly and influential person I had the blessing to call mine.  Until we meet again my heart will cherish every last word and hug she gave and the lessons she taught me.


The following words were ones I had written two weeks before she left us.  I thought it would be the last time I would see her and yet I had the blessing of seeing her again.  However,  this was the last time she would speak words to me, since the next time I visited she was unable to speak.


I'm currently reading the devotional, One Thousand Gifts as I record all the gifts God has given me. One of the greatest gifts I've ever been given was my Nannie. As I entered her room today she awoke and said the word, "sleepy" and returned to sleep.  I sat for a few hours as she drifted awake, but mostly she slept.  I played hymns on my phone for her and occasionally she would smile through her sleep.  The last hymn we would listen to was "It Is Well With My Soul" by Mark Schultz.  After that song, I tried to wake her again to tell her I had to leave.  The previous attempts to wake her had been unsuccessful, but this time she awoke.  I told her "I LOVE YOU" and in her feeble voice she softly said the words I will cherish forever, "I LOVE YOU," then she closed her eyes and slept again. I told her she could go home to Jesus when she was ready and she shook her head, yes, with a peaceful smile.

As I left the nursing home tonight, God gave me the most beautiful sunset in the sky and I turned on the radio to someone talking about Rev. 20 and the end of this life and the beauty of heaven.


I decided on the best cure for a difficult day-ice cream! So I stopped at DQ as I was about home and ordered a Reese's Blizzard.  I was disappointed when I drove off and realized they gave me an Oreo Blizzard instead. Disappointed, until I realized that was just another God wink for the day! You see Nannie's go to cookie was always an Oreo! God made sure I knew He was thinking of me as I cried over an Oreo Blizzard and smiled through the tears of days gone by and Oreo stained faces at my Nannie and Grandad's house. 

Today God gave me 1000 gifts all tied in one as I had time to love and be loved by my precious Nannie.  The following words are hanging in her room and are so very true!



Thursday, July 30, 2015

These hands

I am constantly reminded of these words to the song, I'll Keep On,
 as my precious Nannie nears the end of her life here with us. 

"I'll Keep On"
(feat. Jeremiah Carlson)

Oh these hands are tired
Oh this heart is tired
Oh this soul is tired
But I'll keep on
I'll keep on 
I'll keep on 

These hands
are the same hands that once held me as a baby,
and washed my hair with one hand
while handing me an Oreo with the other.

They taught me how to pick strawberries and how to serve others.

Lately, these hands have held mine as I've watched her grow 
more and more frail. 
  These sweet hands have held the hands of girlfriends, 
and children
and grandchildren

 and great-grandchildren

 and a great-great grand baby
and through it all they have shown LOVE and generosity to 
people all over the world 
and to family who will always cherish her memory. 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Our mission blog

  Since I am posting for our mission team I am using a separate blog and have not had a chance to link it to this one yet.  If you are following me here I am going to include the link where I will be posting. We are having an amazing trip so far and can't wait to see what the Lord has planned for the rest of our week.

Please jump on over  here to see what God is doing through us this week:



Sunday, June 14, 2015

The road before us

I don't know about most families, but in our family it seems that every weekend we look at the week ahead and plan what we will face throughout the week.  There are school activities, church activities, volleyball, piano lessons, work and the list goes on.  With adult children, one in high school, another in elementary and now grandchildren we seem to stay pretty busy and it is easy to forget how God goes before us each step of the way.  He orders our steps and directs our pathway and for that I am eternally grateful!

Let me share something that happened last week and how He planned every moment before I was even aware of the situation.

One evening before bed my right eye was hurting and I figured I had something in it.  I put eye drops in and went to bed.  When I awoke the next morning I had a small "bubble" inside my lower eye lid.  It didn't hurt, but it was annoying and something that wouldn't go away.  During lunch I went to the eye doctor and after taking pictures of my eye he determined that some things did not look quite right.  He referred me to a retina specialist for further examination.  Friday,  I went to the specialist and after having my eyes dilated and poked and prodded on he determined that I needed to have laser surgery to strengthen my retina that appeared very weak and in danger of detaching.  Fortunately,  he had an opening that day and I had the laser surgery in his office.  After having 307 laser beams into my right eye the specialist feels like my eye is strengthened and I am safe to travel this week.

That experience was not pleasant, but I am so thankful for the opportunity to see the world before me and experience all it has to offer.  I thank God for that little "bubble" and the annoying feeling that led to an exam with a wonderful well-educated doctor who was able to repair my eye before further damage was done.  I've thought many times this past week how blessed I am to have my sight and how we often take such things for granted.

"I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you." 
Matthew 11:10

Now, just as He went before me last week, I know He has already gone before our team as we will leave for China this week.  We will serve in an orphanage and try our best to share the LOVE He puts in our hearts in whatever way He directs.

We covet your prayers as we follow where He leads.  

May we SEE with eyes that HE has prepared and hearts that demonstrate HIS love. 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Moments in time

I used to think that "older" people were crazy when they would remark how time flies so quickly. Well, I guess I must be one of those "older" people now! It amazes me how quickly time seems to fly and the years are gone before we know it. The moments of joy mixed with sadness all flow together to make up this beautiful tapestry of our lives.

When I awoke this morning and looked at the date my thoughts turned to six months ago.  We were anxiously awaiting the birth of our first grandson.  The anticipation grew as we waited for Nathan to come tell us about this newest addition to our family, and our joy overflowed as we heard the news.  Nothing compared to the first moments as we held him in our arms and our hearts filled with a new love we had never before experienced.
I chose a scripture to pray for and over Cooper at his birth. It is a scripture that I continue to pray for him as I watch him grow and anticipate the days ahead as I pray that God will lead and protect his little life.

For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues
 through all generations. (Psalm 100:5 NIV)
Next week we will celebrate 92 years with my precious Nannie and the sweet moments  with my grandparents are memories I will always cherish.  I pray we can be half the grandparents to our grandchildren as mine were to me. 
Each day is a gift, and as we open the gifts I give God the glory for blessing us far more than we will ever deserve!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Drops in the Ocean

This morning as I awoke to the sounds of the rain on my metal roof I knew I needed to hear the words of the Lord to get me out of bed and moving! I would have much rather snuggled up and kept on sleeping when that 5 am alarm went off!  As I turned on the radio this was the first song I heard and it spoke to the depths of my being.  I hope the words will speak to your heart as well.

"Drops In The Ocean" 

If you wanna know
How far my love can go
Just how deep, just how wide
If you wanna see
How much you mean to me
Look at my hands, look at my side
If you could count the times I'd say you are forgiven
It's more than the drops in the ocean

In the area where we live we are continually reminded that there is a shortage of water and the lakes are drying up.  It's often easy to forget the true depth of the water in the ocean and how 
deep and vast it flows. 

Do we also forget how deep His love is for us?  

Isn't it amazing that HIS love for us is more than the 
There is nothing I love more than the ocean and there is no one I would rather 
hang out with at the ocean than these dear people. 
We laugh, we cry, and we share moments that we
will always treasure. 

From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets,
 the name of the LORD is to be praised.
Psalm 113:3

Snow Days

Like a few other posts, I started this one and didn't realize I never published it.  So, a few weeks later, here it is:

When the world complains about another snow day and being stuck inside I am rejoicing! As a teacher it isn't the idea of being out of school, but rather the idea that I am inside with some pretty special people that causes me to rejoice! Our snow days usually include a delicious breakfast prepared by an amazing daddy, along with games, rest and snuggling on the couch.  There are movies and books to read and then when we actually get snow we get to play!  Here in Texas, snow and not ice is pretty rare so we have to enjoy it while we can! How could I complain when I get to spend hours with these amazing people? Now we are off to play! 

Cherish every moment...for it is only this moment that is promised.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

December 31, 2014

Such a high priest truly meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 
Hebrews 7:26
Two Thousand and Fourteen


A year that strengthened our faith through laughter and tears

One etched in our memory for years to come

One that included abundant prayers

We experienced heartache and grief as we heard the horrible news of our son's injury and we 
rejoiced as we watched God heal his wounds. 

We shed tears at the loss of a precious friend gone too soon, and we rejoiced at the 
birth of our first grandson. 

Through the heartache and tears, the rejoicing and smiles, our confidence in THE ONE who led us through every mountaintop and every valley grew stronger and our faith deepened. 

I heard the following quote on the radio today, 
"The greater the love that dwells in a person, the greater the person in whom it dwells." 
(author unknown)

I hope I am a greater person at the end of this year than I was 12 months ago because of the love I shared with others. Thank you, to those who have loved our family 
and shown us the unconditional love of the Lord.
Our lives have been richly blessed through many of you this past year!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from our growing family

Stay tuned as 2015 will add a few more beautiful faces!