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: