Tag Archives: children

“Strong!”

Hubby and Jase many years ago.

“Papa is strong!” He declared, adding as much depth as his two-year-old voice would allow and clenching his fists, holding his arms up in the typical fashion to show strength.

My husband sat at the end of the table.

Our grandson sat on his mother’s lap, just next to Papa.

I was across the dining table from our daughter and grandson.

My husband didn’t hear his declaration, he was looking at work emails and other conversations were happening, so I was certain our grandson’s voice blended into the pleasant chatter.

So, Bubba said it again.

“Papa is strong!” With all the inflection and emotion of the first.

But he didn’t pause for a response this time.

Instead he repeated himself three times, one after another, all the time focused upon my husband.

He still didn’t hear him, so I interrupted.

“Sweetheart, did you hear Bubba? He’s talking to you.” I smiled at my husband, knowing he’d not want to miss this.

“No, I’m sorry,” he turned. “Sorry, Buddy, what was that?”

“Can you tell Papa what you said again?” Our daughter prompted.

Bubba realized he had Papa’s attention, so he smiled broadly before speaking again.

Papa is strong!” He burst out pumping his arms to show his enthusiasm.

My husband smiled as only a blessed Papa can.

Bubba was questioned by his mother, “What about Daddy?” And they turned to face the opposite end of the table where his father sat.

Daddy is strong!” “Daddy is strong!” “Daddy is strong!”

And we all laughed and agreed with him.

Bubba was content with his announcement being so well received and conversation returned.

Our daughter and husband took the little ones home after dinner.

Our family went to our church’s Movie Night.

We watched Show Me the Father by the Kendrick brothers.

If you’ve not seen it, I’d recommend it, it was wonderful.

It’s not a film for entertainment, but rather for teaching and encouragement.

It’s about fatherhood.

This morning in prayer, I spoke with the Lord about the emotions the movie brought up in my heart.

He reminded me of our grandson’s declaration at dinner.

Then, He reminded me of scripture.

Psalm 68:5 KJV — A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.

Titus 3:7 KJV — That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

Romans 8:17 KJV — And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

For the Christ follower, we are joint heirs with Jesus and can call to our Heavenly Father just as Christ did.

That precious child’s security in his father and grandfather is only a glimmer of the safety our souls find in the salvation granted by our Heavenly Father through the sacrifice of His Son.

Children long to have security in the strength and protection of their birth father, and whether we realize it or not that same longing resides in every heart who has yet to find safety for their souls in a personal relationship with their Heavenly Father.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your sacrifice. Thank You for Your obedience to Your Heavenly Father through which You both suffered and died to save me. Thank You for Your Resurrection! Thank You for the beauty I enjoy in Your salvation and the love of my Heavenly Father. Lord, for those whose experience with a father on Earth has been painful, even tragic, I humbly request that You reach them where they are and heal them completely. Let them see the truth, that You are not like us, You are perfect, holy, righteous, just. Please let their hearts be turned toward You and find healing from the pain of broken relationships and unfaithful people. Lord, let those who know You and are known by You, those who are fathers right now live honorably. Give them wisdom, guidance, and understanding to raise children who will call upon Your name because they want to emulate their father, because they want the same relationship with You that their father has. Thank You, Jesus. Thank You for showing us the Father. In Your name, Lord, I pray. Amen.

Precious little blessings

“That would make a great picture,” she turned and smiled at me.

I hadn’t seen what she was looking at, out the window, so I asked her what she meant.

“Oh, the guys in the garden with their cowboy hats on.”

I looked and agreed with her.

Our oldest granddaughter looked too and announced, “I put my shoes on!”

I asked her momma if she could go with me to the garden.

As we stepped off the deck stairs her little voice surprised me with a giggle, then she told me why she was laughing.

“Oh! The cowboys!”

I laughed too.

“Yes! Let’s go see them.”

We found Papa setting Bubba down on the metal bench to eat the fistful of green beans he had.

He gladly chopped away while Faye pointed with concern at a grasshopper.

I agreed they are not welcome in the garden, but it would probably leave soon.

She turned to smell a sunflower.

I asked her to do it again so I could get a picture.

When Bubba had finished his green beans, they each found a strawberry to enjoy.

Then my husband walked them to where the carrots are.

He pulled one and the children’s surprise at the carrot popping out of the ground brought smiles to our faces.

Of course our grandson needed to pull his own. (He only had a little help from Papa.)

His was covered in dirt, so I got the hose and began washing it off.

Soon both children and Papa were enjoying fresh carrots.

We decided the tops would be a nice treat for the bunnies and headed over to their cages.

Faye pointed to our female, “The Mommy one! Where’s the Daddy one?”

“He’s hiding right now, but wait, he’ll come out when I put the carrot tops in.”

Of course he did and she giggled.

Next, we went to feed some undersized corn to the sheep and goat.

As Faye petted the sheep she commented, “Soft.”

Papa fed the chickens in the run so the kids could watch them.

Faye pointed to our rooster, “The Daddy chicken!”

“Yes, that’s right. He’s the Daddy, the rest are the Mommy chickens. The Daddy is called a rooster.”

Her attention soon turned to the neighbor’s beautiful gelding.

He’s a pinto and very friendly, but today he didn’t come close.

He’s not used to little children.

She waved at him and told him “Hi!”.

Our grandson had lost interest and they’d already returned to the house, but Faye wanted to check the nesting boxes.

Our son is very good at keeping the eggs picked up, but I told her we could look.

To my surprise, there was an egg.

Faye was glad and as I held it, the warmth against my palm told me it was fresh.

I told Faye, “We will put this one in the carton and you can take it home.”

As we reached the deck and Faye proudly lined her clogs next to our rubber boots, I smiled.

My heart thanked God for His blessings which I’m able to share with our grandchildren.

My husband’s expression told me his heart was also thankful; equally blessed by our time with our grandchildren.

Our daughter related what occurred when she told the children they were going to Grammy’s.

“Their little eyes got huge and they ran to get their shoes on. They were so excited! Then, Faye proceeded to list everyone who lives at Grammy’s house, including the sheep, goat, chickens, and two rabbits!”

I had to chuckle.

Children are such incredible blessings from God.

They have such a unique perspective.

Their joy is contagious.

They are greatly valued by God.

Matthew 18:10 NKJV — “Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven.”

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for the gift of children. You have blessed us with children and now grandchildren. We are so thankful to You for each one. Lord Jesus, please continue to teach us through these precious people. It is in Your Word that we realize just how blessed we are and how each one is a priceless treasure. Lord, only through Your Word and Holy Spirit can we find truth and understanding. Only through Your salvation can we be saved. Only in the security of Your redemption can we find peace. Lord, please help each of us to be an encouragement to the children around us. Please teach us how to value others, how to train and exhort, how to love unconditionally, and how to share You with each one. Lord, I lift up these precious people. Please speak to their hearts, train them up in Your truth, and give them the true understanding of Yourself. Thank You. Amen.

Rejoicing over a little thing

Both Anne and Jase entered looking expectantly at me.

That expression which hovers between anticipation and “knowing something she doesn’t know” was all over them.

I looked up and raised my eyebrows.

“Yes?”

“Jase found something!” Anne’s voice was full of pleasure.

I looked at him.

“Here!” He reached out and placed a brand new egg in my hands.

All three of us cheered like our team won a State title!

I took a picture of it and texted my husband.

With the tag line: “Jesus heard you, yesterday.”

(For just last night, as he was helping me shut up the coop, he stated he was getting a bit weary of waiting for our chickens to start laying.)

My husband responded to my text with joyful comments and questions as to when and where it was discovered.

His last text read: “So funny I could be so happy about an egg!”

Which were my exact words to our oldest daughter, when I related the occasion over the phone.

Yet, why shouldn’t we be excited?

What’s wrong with rejoicing over the gift of our chickens and the egg?

Yes, it’s a little thing, but God gave us this little thing.

I think it’s right to thank Him for it, and be excited about it.

For if we wait to praise Him for only the big things will we ever?

Is it not in life’s little things, the day-to-day blessings, where we get a much clearer understanding of the goodness of God and His continual care?

Thus, I expect to praise God for eggs, chickens, veggies from the garden, rabbits, sheep, goats, sunsets, family, friends, flowers, good books, home cooked food, warm blankets, clothes, the beauty around us,…for all these good things are gifts from Him.

And His faithfulness and love are worth recognizing and rejoicing over.

Psalm 55:22 KJV — Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

He has definitely been sustaining us.

And I’m so thankful.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for this gift of an egg. We are so blessed to be able to see the outcome of our toil in this tiny package. Lord, thank You for the joy we experienced, just in a small thing. Please help us never to grow callous to Your blessings nor forgetful of Your faithfulness. Lord, You sustain us daily, just the beating of our hearts and the breath in our lungs is testimony to Your gifts. Lord, please continue to show us how to rejoice over the small things. How to find peace through Your promises. How to rest in Your salvation and yet still be diligent servants, faithful in the tasks at hand. Lord, I praise Your holy name! Thank You! Amen.

Like a little child

(Please forgive me for not getting this posted yesterday, but I was super busy enjoying my grandbabies and forgot!)

The older I get, the more I understand.

My children taught me so many lessons about trust, obedience, faith, and the lack of any or all of these.

Now, I’m learning from my grandchildren.

It’s a different walk, because I don’t see them every day.

There’s also the change in perspective and the difference in me.

Of course, I’m also older and have experienced life longer.

With all these differences, the lessons are no less profound.

I was recently struck by how easily a small child can become frightened.

An infant, especially, can be filled with fear just over something unexpected.

How similar I am.

Just an unexpected break in our routine can sometimes cause me to be afraid.

Trying something new, is an area I fight being fearful of.

But these are not the areas where God wants me to be child-like.

Matthew 18:3-4NKJV — and said, “Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”

Jesus was talking about faith.

Interestingly, to have that child-like faith means to trust.

A young child is totally dependent upon their parents for everything, from food to shelter to security and love.

Because their parents love them, they find security in that relationship.

They eagerly run to their parents if separated for a time or in need.

They cling to them with all their might.

They are overjoyed when their parents simply give them time and attention.

Which is exactly what each one of us can have in our Heavenly Father.

He’s proven Himself loving, trustworthy, able, and fully engaged in seeking a relationship with each one of us, individually.

He’s calling each one of us to trust Him, to realize we are completely dependent upon Him, and to find security and perfect love in our relationship with Him.

Once, we repent and turn from our sins, He restores us, giving us a heart of flesh, washed clean by His blood. Eze. 11:19

Child-like faith is found in the heart and is in itself a testimony to the wonders of God and His glorious works.

From our beginning, mankind has wanted to do life on our own, without God’s direction and leading, yet we find so much more when we completely surrender, and look with adoration to our Heavenly Father, Maker of heaven and earth.

Matthew 19:14 NKJV — But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.”

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for showing us what our relationship with You should be like by giving us little children. Lord, thank You for creating us, loving us, and saving us from sin. Your truth is amazing. Your blessings are incredible. Please continue to teach me how to have child-like faith and how to pass on these truths to those around me. Lord, thank You for Your patience with me as I learn to be humble and to trust You through all things. Lord, thank You for Your wisdom which teaches me not to rly upon myself and my short-sighted understanding, but rather to turn to You and cling to Your truths and be guided by Your Word. Thank You, Jesus for so many blessings. I love You. Amen.

January 8, 2022

Today’s prayer:

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Psalms 127:3 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your gift of children. You have made such a wonderful blessing when You created mankind and set us in a family. Lord, thank You for godly fathers and godly mothers. Lord Jesus, thank You for those who love You and walk with integrity and truth, loving as You have shown us in Your Word. Thank You for those who are standing in the place of father or mother to those who are in need of such. Thank You for the older fathers and mothers who continue to be examples of integrity, truth, honor, self-sacrifice, and godliness to those younger than themselves. Lord, my heart longs for each child to be treasured and cared for as You intended. Please help the fatherless, the needy, the orphan, the abused. Please restore justice and righteousness. Lord Jesus, please teach each one of us how to walk in Your ways. Thank You. Amen.

Out of the mouths of babes…

When our oldest was an only child we got a video camera.

I wanted to make home movies to help us catalog her growing up.

As her siblings were born, they too were caught on video.

But the recorder broke when they were still small.

I didn’t throw it away, I packed it for a future day when we’d get it fixed.

To be honest, I’d forgotten about the thing, until last night.

Handsome found it in the back of our closet.

I was uninterested, as I knew we’d drug the thing, still broken from one place to another, but I’d never gotten it fixed.

When our son came back out of the bedroom to tell me Daddy had it working I was sincerely shocked.

“But it’s been broken for over 10 years!”

“Dad has it playing. Come and see.”

All packing stopped and we spent the evening watching home movies on our recorder.

We laughed.

We cried.

It was really special.

It’s strange how the memory can forget things.

I remembered music was a big part of our everyday, but I was surprised at how many videos included music.

Of course there were the normal Christmas programs and a school program, but when we were just at home there was so many of our daughters singing and dancing to music.

My heart was so blessed by the joy on their faces and the sound of their voices.

This morning the Lord took me to:

Psalm 8:2 NKJV — Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants You have ordained strength, Because of Your enemies, That You may silence the enemy and the avenger.

And my heart is full of gratitude.

What an incredible privilege it is to praise the Lord!

What a joy it was to hear our children sing songs of praise.

How grateful I am for the opportunity we still have to praise God daily.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for the ability to praise and worship You. Lord, thank You for Your blessings which are more numerous than the stars. Thank You for the way Your Word brings us life, truth, and love. Lord, I worship Your holy name and I thank You for the breath to be able to speak Your praises. Psalm 8:9 NKJV — O LORD, our Lord, How excellent is Your name in all the earth! Amen.

Tomorrow, will be…

our wedding anniversary.

We have been married for twenty-four years, tomorrow.

As I pondered how to express my deep gratitude and joy at this milestone, I decided to scroll through some pictures.

Although, it will only give a tiny fraction of our lives together, here are some memories:

This is the last professional photograph of my parents.

The same month we celebrated our first wedding anniversary we lost my dad in a freak accident.

These two pictures are of our first child, and the beginning of joy.

Although, we made many mistakes while learning to be parents, we couldn’t be more thankful for the way God has worked in her life.

Words escape me, there’s nothing which express the joy my husband and I shared on the day of our daughter’s wedding.

The only thing that has come close was the birth of our grandchildren!

Faye has Papa wrapped around her finger!

Of course Bubba also holds a special place!

Through all the highschool achievements, basketball and track, we had no idea God was going to take her gift of music and put her through University!

We were so blessed to watch her receive her diploma in music.

The Lord knew exactly what He was doing when He gave us Sis first. She has taught us more about ourselves, the Lord, and perseverance than we could ever have taught her. We are so blessed to be her parents.

When our oldest girl was three months from turning three, our second daughter was born.

I never understood what “fun” really meant before she was born.

Here, she’s helping water our steer.

She too has been blessed with gifts and we enjoyed many a basketball game or track meet, cheering on our Bell.

We were so grateful to God for the blessing He bestowed upon her during her years in sports.

She was also blessed to travel to the UK more than once and Africa.

I love this picture of Daddy and daughter on her wedding day.

August they celebrated their first year together, here we all are at their wedding.

When Sis was five and Bell had just turned two, God blessed us with Anne.

Our sweet, gentle, quiet, and shy third daughter, she’s always been full of love.

Although, she did compete in basketball and volleyball, we discovered she has asthma and she dropped sports, but loves to dance, bake, and paint.

She redid her bedroom furniture two summers ago.

She also worked very hard at homeschooling and passed her GED this last spring.

Her graduation photo.

She’s also a favorite with Faye from the beginning.

When Anne was three months old, my husband’s mother nearly died from a stroke.

My husband’s mother.

It handicapped her permanently, but she’s still the wonderful loving mother she’s always been and we praise God for every day we have her on earth.

As one can imagine, it was a difficult season.

But God chose to bless us again when Anne was a few weeks away from her second birthday we had our son, Jase.

He has helped us see the world from a unique perspective, it wasn’t until he was five he was diagnosed with a Communications Disorder. It was obvious from a very young age that Jase was unique, it has taken many years for us to learn the challenges he faces daily.

He has taught us things we would never have known.

We praise God for him!

He enjoys fishing, hunting, golfing, art, and building things.

He is a treasure daily.

Inside these twenty-four years God has worked through us and in us.

We have moved, lost loved ones, changed jobs, learned to live with little and abundance, watched our children become adults (or stand on the verge of it), dealt with health issues, and walked with God, both as individuals and as a couple.

These years have been full to overflowing with God’s mercy and grace for us.

I find some of my favorite memories are just us being a family, so here are few last pictures of the kids just being kids.

I praise God for my husband and the beautiful family He has blessed us with.

May we glorify His name daily!

Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. Genesis 2:24

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for my husband. Thank You for our marriage. Thank You for the love and blessings and gifts You have given me through my husband and our children. Lord, please continue to guide us as we walk daily with You and one another. Lord, You alone are the One who has brought us this far, who has blessed us so much, who has given us all we have. Please help us to be a light that shines brightly, leading others to You. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

Handsome, my love,

Thank you for the last twenty-four years. Thank you for leading our family and loving us. Words do very little to express how I feel, but I praise God for you. I am praying for you every day and trusting the Lord for the future ahead of us. I can not imagine my life without you. I love you.

Reading

We stayed up later than intended.

Anne is home for a few days and Jase asked if I would read while she was here.

Because my children (18 and 16) still love to be read to.

I began reading aloud to our children when they were small.

I can’t remember when I switched from children’s books to novels, but it was some time ago.

We have a few books I’ve read aloud more than once.

But it was weeks ago when I’d been praying for our son that God put something on my heart.

It was the lack of Christian books in our home library which would interest our son.

Because I want all our children to read and to find enjoyment out of it, I’ve worked at building our home library, but I’d focused on books for girls.

It is important to me that our children read.

Mainly, because the Bible is vital and I want my children to be able to read it and enjoy reading it.

I also understand the entertainment we choose makes an impact.

It is important to me that our children have books and movies which encourage them in righteousness.

As I prayed about the lack of exciting books on the shelf the Lord brought to mind one.

It was the first book in a series for middle school kids by Jerry B Jenkins: the Red Rock Mysteries.

Later that day, I asked Jase if he’d like me to read some of it aloud after homeschooling.

He wasn’t super interested, but after a few chapters, he was hooked.

We both were.

Some time after we finished that book Handsome took us to the Christian book store.

Jase spent his own money to purchase three more books in the series.

He was so ready to hear the next one.

Since then, I ordered all 15 books.

Anne was home on a visit during one of the books.

(Grandma is off all restrictions from her first surgery and doing great. She’s waiting for the hospital to open up so she can have the next one done, so Anne is free to come home often.)

She too enjoyed listening.

Yesterday, we stayed up later than normal as I read through most of book number 14.

I think Jase will be a bit sad when we reach the end.

But God had already pricked my heart and we have another series waiting for us, Chuck Black’s Kingdom Series.

Truly, it is a blessing to spend time reading aloud to our children.

I know these will be cherished memories for each of us.

Out of all our time together, I pray God is honing their hearts and mine.

Because I want our family to bring glory to God, no matter what activities we are doing.

Ephesians 6:8 KJV — Knowing that whatsoever good thing any man doeth, the same shall he receive of the Lord, whether he be bond or free.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your guidance. Lord, I am very thankful to You for all You have done and are doing in our lives. Lord, please continue to guide and direct us in Your ways, teaching us the way to follow You. Lord, speak as Your Word says: Isaiah 30:21 KJV — And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Let our ears be quick to hear and to respond to Your Word. Thank You for blessing us with so much. Please continue to teach us how to pass it on to others. Lord, I want to glorify Your name each day. I love You. Amen.

A tender memory

Maybe it’s just the season of life I’m in.

Possibly, it’s because I’ve been feeling poorly.

Whatever the reason, I was struck by a memory today that brought tears to my eyes.

I had driven Hubby to work, because I needed to get my allergy shots.

I’m still cleaning out closets and going through things, but I already had three bags full and decided to drop them off after my appointment.

As I lifted one, I’d done weeks before and been forgotten in the closet, my eye caught the fabric through the stretched plastic bag.

I put the bag back down and just stared.

It was like I’d stepped back into the past and saw in my memory the little boy that was so excited about me buying it.

He had a special stuffed frog, and he liked the fact that this fabric had frogs too.

His frog was named Sean-the-Frog.

I have no idea why, I just clearly remember him saying, “His name is Sean-the-Frog.”

I think he had his own way of naming things.

This frog had been a last minute purchase at an airport gift shop, because we were flying to the UK and I realized he needed a pillow.

After we came back from our trip the pillow lived on his bed.

Which prompted my purchase of the fabric.

I’d planned on making him a blanket.

Unfortunately, I never did.

But I’ve hung on to the fabric.

When cleaning out a chest weeks ago, I figured I’d just give it away, that little boy is now 16 and no longer has bright green bedding nor does Sean-the-Frog live in his room.

He’s been moved to “the cave”, a small closet under the stairs we keep all kinds of toys in for visiting children.

But I went to town and donated our stuff after getting my shots and the fabric stayed behind.

Because I want to fulfill my promise to our son and make it a blanket.

Who knows, maybe he will want it again in the future.

If not, I’ll have it ready to bless whoever God puts on my heart.

I’m certain, the Lord has a plan for this frog fabric.

Until then, I can enjoy the memory of our little boy which it ignites.

Ecclesiastes 3:1 KJV — To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for today. Thank You for the memory of our son and the ability to look backwards at all the things You have done in his life. Lord, I am touched by how You work through even the smallest things and I thank you for them. Lord, You know all our seasons. You hold every detail in your hands. Your ways are perfect and Your Word is life. Thank You. May our lives bring You glory and our hearts find joy in humble service to You and those You place in our lives. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

Thank you

Thank you, WordPress, for the opportunity to blog. These past eight years have been incredible.

Thank you, Reader, for your time, encouragement, and support. God has used you to encourage me to keep going, continue writing, and to joyfully look for opportunity in each day.

Thank you, Handsome, for your love, your words, your diligence both in our marriage and in life. You have given me so much, I pray I can give back. I love you deeply, darling.

Thank you, Children, who are no longer small, but always precious, for allowing me to share with the world about you and your lives. You inspire me.

Thank You, Jesus, how great You are! What a joy it is to know You. What a privilege it is to walk with You daily. You are the reason I am able to do anything. These past eight years all belong to You. If there has been anything useful, anything good, anything encouraging, I know it is because of You.

Lord, may You be glorified through this.

May my life always be surrendered completely to You.

Thank You, Jesus, for eight years of blogging.

Psalm 63:4 NKJV — Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.