Saturday, May 28, 2016

Just an Ordinary Moment

I've been having my morning coffee on the back porch as much as possible lately. Most days I am scurrying around, trying to get out the door to work on time and there's just not time. There would be if I got up earlier, but since I'm a night owl that's not likely to happen.

This morning, though, was a Saturday, so I spent some time praying and listening on the porch this morning.

It was cool out this morning, and a gentle breeze stirred the trees occasionally. It was refreshing, that breeze. I would have missed out on that if I had my time with the Lord inside on the couch, like I usually do.

I heard a buzzing sound, and looked over to see honeybees in the bush by the porch. They were not interested in me. They were doing what God created them to do, pollinating the plants. They were minding their own business. They had no plan to come and sting me at all, I'm sure of it.

But I moved to the chair on the other side of the porch, just in case.

I continued to listen and watch. Birds were singing and flying here and there. Little white cottonwood seeds from the neighbor's tree swirled around and around on the wind and finally floated down to the ground. Squirrels scampered in the trees. I looked up and saw the moon, still visible through a gap in the tree limbs above even though it was daylight. Five minutes later, I looked up again and it had moved farther west. I could barely see a bit of it behind the tree limb.

What's the point of all this? I asked myself the same thing at first, but then I realized a profound, simple truth.

I felt a breeze. I heard and then saw bees hard at work. I saw birds and heard their sweet songs. I watched the snow-like cottonwood seeds ride the breeze. I saw a glimpse, just for a moment, of the moon on its daily path.

I experienced these things because I stopped and took the time. Sure, they don't seem significant in themselves. They are normal, everyday occurrences. But God spoke to me in those daily, ordinary things that don't seem to matter.

I noticed nature this morning because I got still. 
He promised to never leave me, so I know He is with me always. He is always and forever right by my side. many times has He had something to say to me, but I wouldn't be still and listen?

Lord, forgive me for being too busy. I am listening now.

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10 NIV

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Mothers Day

Mama in her 20s
We are quickly approaching Mothers Day, and lots of people are posting pictures of themselves with their moms. I've not found a picture of me with my mama, though; at least not in the years after I became an adult. She passed away 20 years ago, before Facebook and the mania of having to document everything we do, before digital cameras, and of course before cell phone cameras with which we are so fond of snapping selfies. Back in the 90s when she was still alive I was usually the one behind the camera, taking pictures of my kids and what they were involved in. So there are virtually no pictures of my mother and me. No one thought to take one. 

I've written about my mom on here before.  The most recent one was 4 years ago, though, so I thought it might be nice to post a small tribute to her. She was a devoted mother and grandmother, and her children and grandchildren were her life.

I was a stay at home mom after my youngest child was born until he started first grade. We were a one car family and my husband drove it to work. It was common for Mama to show up and let me take her car to run errands while she either went with us or stayed with the kids. She was such a help and friend in those days. 

After my dad passed away, she spent a lot more time with my kids. I think they helped her get past the suffocating grief that threatened to consume her. It was really hard for her; he was the love of her life. I'm glad that they had the privilege of spending time with her. It was good for her, good for them, and good for me.

Mama and her grandkids in 1986
Sometimes when kids are small life can get overwhelming as any mom with young children can vouch for. My mom had a way of showing up at my house when I needed help the most.  She would help with the kids, fold clothes, help out with housework; whatever needed to be done. I would love to be able to show up to help with my grandkids, but they live too far away for me to be able to do that. This is a part of my life that I am currently struggling with. Even though it's heartbreaking to not be there for them and help my daughter, I know that God has a different plan for me and my place in their lives. If He meant for me to be able to be there more, He would make a way for it. I know He knows better than I what we all need. I just have to trust Him.

Mama and the kids started playing board games when they were old enough. I still have the Monopoly game that they just about wore out. She was delighted to have them come and stay the night with her. They would play games or watch movies and just have a great time. 

I never considered it before, but perhaps this is why we love movies and love to play board games so much.

Happy Mothers Day in heaven, Mama! <3

"Her children rise up and bless her; Her husband also, and he praises her, saying: 'Many daughters have done nobly, but you excel them all.'" Proverbs 31:28,29 NASB